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My Favorite Film From Every Year (2018-1895)

Continue reading “My Favorite Film From Every Year (2018-1895)”

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(2005) Hostel

I think this is one of the best modern exploitation films and Eli Roth’s injected humor can turn people off that fact.

This absolutely is not torture porn film as some might lament but it’s simplistic in its intention. I do think that Eli likes to ham up his characters to an almost campy level but it never takes away from his directive.

I really enjoy this film and the maze of terror the main character is thrust into is pure horror. There’s ton of great performances here that could be described as black comedy, depending on your personal level of depravity.

7.5/10

(2017) Pyewacket

I fucking love occult horror and this film was downright scary. That’s truly one of the greatest accomplishments because I don’t usually get scared watching horror films anymore.

It’s somewhat of a slow burn but in a way that really creeped me out. I felt like a bit more explanation into a few characters could have taken it to another level but I still enjoyed it exactly how it was presented.

I don’t really know what else to say, it’s fucking scary. Just watch it.

8.5/10

(1989) Parents

Now barring everything I have to say beyond this point, because I do review all (most) films from a critical point of view, Parents is totally fun and you should definitely watch it.

The only acting note I have is about Randy Quaid. I feel like they tried to make the movie more comedy than horror but the dude is a goddamn psycho so he’s actually pretty frightening at times.

My main takeaway from the film though was just an all-encompassing inconsistency in quality. I thought the camera work was shoddy at times. The music department shit the bed during crucial moments. However, there were sequences that truly displayed a ton of innovation. There’s this one dinner scene with so many macro shots and wide-angle ultra facial close-ups. It just reminded me of that sort of climactic dizziness that a ton of great horror films have. It gives you the sensation that the protagonist has almost been drugged, either literally or just delirious with anxiety.

They definitely struggled showing speed and intensity on film. I can’t tell if some decision were post-production decisions but the latter half contains both over cumbersome sequences and then just like weird slo-mo sequences. It’s distracting and bad.

Factoring all that in, I did enjoy it but it does have some glaring issues.

6/10

(1982) Cat People

I love the original film to death but I couldn’t be more satisfied with the direction this pseudo-remake went in. It’s less of a psychological thriller and more of an erotic, body-horror fever dream. Also features a great score by Giorgio Moroder, as well as an excellent theme song by Bowie.

Nastassja Kinski was an incredibly sexy and charismatic lead who fully embodied the films themes of sexual awakening, temptation, repression and apprehension.

The visual effects just play so well into my personal tastes. I love the transformation sequences as well as the overall cinematography. There’s often these long follow shots that are tense but stand to highlight the diverse but more traditional framed shots. It’s that right balance for me that achieves momentum while taking time to highlight set-pieces, the human figure and some of the incredible lighting.

If you can’t tell already, I’m super into this film. It’s fun to compare to the original but truthfully, they share very little in common.

9/10

(1988) Waxwork

Waxwork is a very 80’s horror movie, falling somewhere in the middle of the pack in terms of quality. It’s often humorous and the production ranges from actually impressive to downright terrible.

The lead actor Zach Galligan, who’s also in Gremlins, delivers some of the cheesiest, most hilarious lines. It’s so difficult to tell whether it’s all intentional but I’d like to believe it was.

As a whole, barring the actual quality, it’s such a fun movie. It incorporates all of the classic horror film monsters into a wild and creative story.

I really liked it.

6/10

(2001) Jason X

Just to be clear, in case I give any other impression, Jason X is a terrible movie.

Throughout the entire series fans have enjoyed the overarching shittiness of it all, whether it be from the over-stereotyped campy characters or downright ridiculous writing decisions. The flaws in the films are so frequent that they really only become bothersome when they ruin actual, quality tense moments. Jason X is really the loophole here because it’s fantastically shitty from start to finish, taking zero breaks in-between.

So with that I’ll say, this film is simply fun. It’s definitely self aware to some degree but a b-movie is still a b-movie, whether it was your intention or not.

4/10