(1983) Angst

I find films from the perspective of serial killers easily fascinating and this one was no different. It’s a powerful and to-the-point story that shocks via its sadist content but also impresses with its photography direction.

I guess I’ll briefly cover those two point and for the shocking aspects of the film, it’s intense. Seasoned horror fans should be alright for the most part but a few of the kill scenes are just unexpectedly brutal for this era. I’m talking about ultra violent realism as apposed to body horror type stuff.

As with the technical aspects, the film is an art piece. The mood is instantly set through these really gritty, uncomfortable close up shots. Forced perspectives are switched up constantly and the entire film feels like a visual workout that can stand up to the short running time as well as its brutal content.

I’d say just jump right in to this one, it may be too much for some people but I do believe it’s a great horror film that should be more well known. I am slightly biased because there’s a really cute wiener dog in this and mine just passed away recently. I feel like it’s a quirky element to the film that probably isn’t meant to be a focal point, however, it brought some wonderful dark humor at the end as a perfect palate cleanser.

8/10

(2016) The Girl with all the Gifts

This is definitely a slow burn and I think it will inevitably lose a lot of people during its tedious storytelling. It’s not a entirely new approach to zombie movies but I believe this film tackles the specific sub-genre with enough uniqueness to consider it a success.

I appreciated the focus on the contagion being the enemy as opposed to the zombies itself. That aspect of the film is both refreshing and told in a very believable sci-fi fashion.

Glenn Close put out a nice performance as did our young lead. I don’t have too much else to say about this one, really solid stuff and it’s streaming on Amazon Prime right now.

7/10

(1957) Lust of the Vampire

I think the film is lacking in explicitness and the plot feels a little misleading, at least for a horror movie. I guess this is my warning to genre nazis, you might want to skip this one.

It’s just alright. I found it to be quite boring if I’m being totally honest. I think the mystery elements fill the giallo vibe very nicely but the villain is just lacking here.

All-in-all, I can’t really recommend this too aggressively, although I did enjoy it somewhat.

 

5/10

(2006) Fido

My girlfriend has seen this before so I told her I was watching it. When she asked how I liked it I said it was “charming”. That’s not a typical response from me but one that i feel accurately represents the film if you had to choose a word to describe it.

Fido is humorous and witty; while not making me laugh out loud a ton, it put a smile on my face. A lot of that is attributed to 1950’s suburbia but the film captures that era perfectly so why not praise it?

This movie kind of creates that instant universe that feels so well knows despite no background knowledge, much like The Addams Family. That’s such a remarkable quality in and of itself that the cover’s “instant classic” tagline doesn’t even seem all that silly.

If you’re just looking for a non-thinker, pure entertainment horror-comedy, look no further.

7.5/10

(2006) The Host

A lot of the humor in The Host┬ádidn’t particularly appeal to me as I thought the overarching drama kind of weighed that down. I recognize it as somewhat intentional but I’m writing many of these scenes off as awkward.

Some of the attempts at dark humor were in regards to how the father figure was dealing with grief. We have these really unforgiving family members that subsidize their morbid humor under the veil of 80’s style espionage gags. I think back to the scene where they’re all disguised, paying off the officer or whoever with a bag of coins and that scene just doesn’t tie into the rest of the films tone.

Another aspect I didn’t care for was the CGI monster. I’m not saying they skimped on the CGI but I was definitely not impressed. It rudely interjected the films beautiful photography and I just can’t forgive CGI water effects on top of naturally beautiful water effects.

One thing I did love was the films statement on Americans interjecting into foreign affairs. I thought it was both subtle and deliberate. In the copy I watched, after the brain procedure on one of the characters, the subtitles seemed to purposefully vanish during the translation scene and it was just amazing. The film follows up that with a few more clever jabs to make it a successful and also significant overarching theme.

Overall, I’d say The Host seems a bit jumbled to me personally but I can absolutely see the appeal. It’s a very capable and intelligent film that I think, at the very least, warrants a discussion.

6/10

(1955) The Night of the Hunter

This one was recommended to me but I should add a disclaimer that I think it might loosely fit the genre for most people. With that being said, it’s a fantastic film.

The story itself is very sinister and for that reason, it absolutely belongs on this blog. While 1950’s cinema will rarely be “scary” to me, the situation as a whole uneases me. Harry Powell, especially after his initial introduction, plays a genuinely creepy character.

The film just looks fantastic, I mean seriously, it doesn’t get much better for the era. The depth for a black and white film is incredible, especially in the backdrops. It makes for some really iconic looking scenes and those moments are probably what I’ll hold onto as time passes. The underwater shot of the car was fucking stunning.

My only one small complaint would be the slightly hallmark style ending. I didn’t think it felt disingenuous, but it wasn’t exactly to my style.

I’d highly recommend this, almost especially if you have a short attention span for the classics. The story is fluid and paced really well.

8/10

(1935) Bride of Frankenstein

Hands down the best universal monster movie I’ve seen so far. I was straight drooling over those set pieces.

Boris Karloff is the only Monster in my mind. I would even consider this film to be family friendly as he’s the sweetest version of himself. There’s no really complex character development but The Monster is undoubtably more self aware which makes the entire film more engaging.

I don’t really have any complaints, it doesn’t get much better than this for horror in the 1930’s.

8/10