Monday, April 30, 2012


Stephen King has just published a piece for the Daily Beast about the economy and it is a fun piece that hits the right notes as well as makes very valid points.

One quote from the article is:
"I’ve known rich people, and why not, since I’m one of them? The majority would rather douse their dicks with lighter fluid, strike a match, and dance around singing “Disco Inferno” than pay one more cent in taxes to Uncle Sugar."
 Stephen King: Tax Me For Fucks Sake!


Directed by Jeremiah Kipp

     It was in January of 2011 and this blog you're reading now was only in it's third month of being around. I was trying to get the format of it down and trying different things with it to get it more streamlined. Then I got my first email from a director. That director was Jeremiah Kipp and he asked me if I wanted to review his short film Contact (which you can read by clicking the link. Be warned though I was pretty rough at writing still). Well a little over a year later Kipp contacted me again and asked if I wanted to review three more of his short films. Of course I said yes to this.


Deneen Melody - Lo
Michael Partipilo - Jason
Nikki Watson - Tara

     When Lo has her life come crashing down on top of her, she makes the impulsive decision to end her own life.

     Crestfallen is a very somber piece about life and death to put it simply. Yet this hardly does the short justice. Deneen Melody, who plays Lo, shows very powerful emotions without saying a word, yet her expressions explain everything that needs to be understood about why she makes the decisions she does. Kipp handles the story matter very seriously and with care that shows experience on how to shoot something without it becoming overly dramatic and in return becoming a joke. The short film is helped by the score with every defining moment accentuated which in turn makes it more powerful. Even though the short is powerful, it becomes truly moving at the end when Lo makes a second decision after seeing her life slip away.

EASY PREY (2011)

Pete Barker - Lucius
Mackenzie Christine Hawkins - Victoria

     An old man is seeking a way out but not in the usual way.

      Here's a nice little divergence after watching Kipp's previous offering. In this one there's a childlike enthusiasm between the two leads played by Pete Barker and Mackenzie Christine Hawkins. Yes, part of this is shown by showing them as kids, but it's the older actors that make this point the most clear.  Pete Barker as Lucius helped tremendously as he knows how to emote the wonder that was something new and wonderful, after being so racked with sorrow and regret from a long life lived to be giving a gift that erases all of it. The only real hit against this short is Mackenzie Christine Hawkins as Victoria. The reason why I mention this is just that at one point in the story it looks like Hawkins is supposed to smile yet it plays off as just more whatever. Other than this she actually does a good job. Easy Prey is not a bad short film specially toward the end as the deal Lucius wanted isn't what he got and Victoria knows this.  While it is a interesting story, the comedic part of it falls a little flat.


Laura Lona
Brian Uhrich

   It's best just to decide for yourself. 

     The best thing I can put about this short is that it would have fit in perfectly with a previous review for an anthology movie that was bizarre. And this short is very bizarre indeed. While Drool is a silent film it peaks volumes if you let it about sexuality and want. The want is shown from two separate perspectives. The first is from Laura Lona's character and the lust she feels toward man. Even though she wants, she doesn't feel the need to go past flirtation. The second perspective is from the male played by Brian Uhrich. This is when the short becomes rough to watch. While the female is content to play around, the male wants more even when the female doesn't. This is an experimental short that will have the viewer making up their own mind and feelings on what is going on. This is stark and vivid at the same time as well as disgusting. But it is also, to me, true horror.

     Lo's loss of faith.

     I'm sorry Wilma. I love you, but not enough to spend eternity with you.

     For Nerd Remix's Best of 2011, out of 54 films reviewed, Crestfallen was awarded Best Cinematography, Best Actress, Best Director, and Best Short.

     Tara Parian wrote the script for Easy Prey.

     Jeremiah Kipp has directed seven short films with a eighth being directed at the moment.

     The music for Crestfallen was done by Harry Manfredini.


25-63 48
th Street #B2 · Astoria, NY 11103
(917) 586-0586 ·
Imaginative Writer and Director with over 10 years experience creating narrative films.
Proven ability to provide the highest level of visual direction, story development, and work with actors.
* Fate
(2012) Music Video. Director. Aaron David Gleason (Artist).
* Drool
(2011) Experimental. Director. Mandragoras Project.
* Easy Prey
(2011) Narrative. Director. Visionfest 5x5 Program.
* Delusion
(2011) International Trailer (USA/Hungary). Director. TreeFa Films.
* Serial School
(2011) Trailer. Director. Paul Pastore Productions.
* The Sadist
(2010) Narrative. Director. Big Caper Films. Starring Tom Savini.
* Crestfallen
(2010) Narrative. Director. Russell Penning Productions.
* Contact
(2009) Narrative. Director. Sinister Six Productions.
* BN4 REAL (Comedy Web Series – 3 Episodes)
(2009) Web Series. Director. Being For Real Productions.
* The Pod
(2006) Narrative. Director. Kipp Miller Productions.
* Disappearing Act
(2005) Narrative. Director. Two Jays Productions.
* The Apartment
(2004) Narrative. Director. Canon/Blue Barn Productions.
First narrative short film shot with Canon XL2; used in Canon's DVD demo reel; premiered at DV Expo.
* The Christmas Party
(2003) Narrative. Director. Kipp Miller Productions.
* Snapshot
(2002) Narrative. Director. Kipp Miller Productions.
(2001) Narrative. Director. Breakfast Club Productions.
* Hamlet.
(2001) Experimental. Director. Sunday Club Productions.
* Near To You
(2000) Narrative. Director. Sunday Club Productions.
*Richard III
(1998) Narrative. Director, Bravo Network.
* Forest of Dreams
(1996) Narrative. Director. NYU Thesis Film.

Friday, April 27, 2012


Directed by Xavier Gens

Lauren German - Eva
Michael Biehn - Mickey
Milo Ventimiglia - Josh

     Survivors of a nuclear attack are grouped together for days in the basement of their apartment building, where fear and dwindling supplies wear away at their dynamic.

     Here we are again with another film festival film. This one by the director of Frontier(s), which cause a little bit of controversy when it came out. The controversy was in part due to the violence in the film, and that certain groups in the film wanted to create a new Aryanian  master race by using a young female as breeding stock for their idea. While I haven't seen the film, I have it. But this one caught my attention more due to the cast and the apocalyptic settings. I could bitch that the film never got a wide release here, as it only played on seven screens total last year when it was released in theatres, and the rest of the screenings were at festival screenings.

     Even though Michael Biehn is listed as one of the top billed actors, his screen time is less than the other actors in the film. That's not to say that Biehn is terrible in his role of Mickey, in fact it's nice to see Biehn   back acting again, even though he does chew the scenery a tad too much, yet this just adds to the paranoia of his character, but makes up for at the end. Lauren German, who has the lead role as Eva, even though her character doesn't talk much in the film she can emote and convey her emotional distress through her eyes. Though German looks like she's bored through most of the film, it just seems as she wishes she was in a different movie.  Milo Ventimiglia  has the other lead role as Josh. Ventimiglia's performance is more subtle at first then becoming more manic. Yet it's Michael Eklund that steals every scene he's in as there is just something in his performance that is mesmerizing. The one scene that sticks out with Eklund is when he is having his head shaved and you can see that with each stroke of the shaver he's crying over losing his humanity fully and that he has given up. Rosanna Arquette though has the toughest role in the film as her character  is shell shocked from losing her daughter and decides that it's better to be taken care of than to be left without and becomes a toy after the group is split and we watch her slowly slip into madness after each passing vulgarity done to her.

     Now I'm going to go ahead and ruin some of the film for those that are reading this. Even though the setting from the preview looks sci-fi, there is barely any of it in the film. The film is much more focused on human nature and the fall of man. What I mean by this is that, is that The Divide wants us, as viewers, to see man go from civilized to their base instincts, and what happens when society norms are thrown out. The film takes it time and shows the boredom that plays into being stuck and not being able to go anywhere and how that also plays into the decent into madness that slowly takes hold of people and the paranoia as well. And it's that paranoia that sets the second half of the movie in motion and the true madness of some of the characters kick in. What transpires at this point by Ventimiglia's character is he sets himself up as the warden and enjoys being in control and loves the power it gives him. It's during this time when the true depravity kick in as malnutrition and radiation sickness has taken effect and repetition has given away to mind games and what can be gotten away with. This includes completely breaking a mind where a person just becomes a doll, to a bloody game of truth or dare that ends with a chopped up body. We're treated to watching the survivors break mentally one by one and their behavior becomes more animalistic and the enjoyment some of the characters take from it and the freedom they think it gives.

     While Xavier Gens  hasn't created a perfect movie, if there truly is such a thing as all films have flaws, he has created a bleak look at what society can become if giving the right, or wrong, circumstances. One of the flaws in the movie is the people in the hazmat suits. They are introduced and we get to see just a sliver of what they are doing, then they are forgotten for the rest of the movie. In it's place we are giving multiple shots of people trying to find stuff to occupy their time by exploring or sleeping. Yes, this gives the audience time to see the characters and what they do, but it also slows the film down more than it should.One of the more disturbing aspects of the film is the sounds design. Throughout the first half of the movie there is always a rumbling going on even when it doesn't sound that way it's always there as if there is a shifting of the earth going on in the background. The softer shifting you only really notice once it's gone as it creates a sense of unease in the second half of the film thanks to the loss of this sound and the shelter the characters are in become more of a tomb than a living area. Even with the flaws in The Divide, Gens didn't shy away from showing a more realistic view of what can be called extreme cabin fever. The film is unapologetic and because of that we get some very powerful performances that become more believable as time goes on.

     Exploding oxygen tank makes a body become a nice wall redecorating medium.

    Eenie meanie miney moe. Chop a body from head to toe!

     Shooting was delayed in part by the eruption of Iceland's Eyjafjallajokull volcano, which paralyzed air travel between Europe and North America.

     The film was shot in chronological sequence.

     The casting of the film changed as Sean Williams Scott and Robert Patrick were both scheduled to star in the film.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


I just wanted to take some time to thank all of you that stop by and read what I have to say about genre movies week after week. I'm writing this due to last month I finally hit over 3,000 views in one month and the blog is closing in on 30,000 total views.

So thank you to everyone again, and the second contest for this site will happen shortly.


Tuesday, April 24, 2012



     Down a seedy city street in her neighborhood, young Enola Penny is obsessed with what appears to be a long abandoned theatre. One night, she sees that the front door is slightly ajar and impulsively decides to sneak inside. But there in the dark, decrepit auditorium, a show unlike any other unfolds before her eyes. Its host is an eerie human puppet named Peg Poett who will introduce Penny to six tales of the bizarre.

      One of the weirder reviews to do is one for films with multiple segments that interconnect, yet at the same time don't. The reason why to me is because each segment has to stand on it's own while still carrying on the film without dropping the ball and making the movie slam to a halt. Basically segment films are short films within a film. And as such I review each segment separately to be fair to the whole product.

Directed by Richard Stanley
     Catriona MacColl - Mere Antoinette
     Shane Woodward - Martin

     I must admit this segment of the movie was the main reason why I wanted to watch it. Richard Stanley is just a amazing director if he is allowed to just let loose and giving full control. At the same time this is also the failing of this segment as well. It's not because of actors or look, but because of the run time for The Mother Of Toads. Stanley's segment is perfectly set for a short film, subsequently though one that can run for more than 10 minutes. The reason why I say this is because there is a feeling of something missing in this segment due to that a lot is spoken of and hinted at albeit not explained which is why this segment fails in the end.

Directed by Buddy Giovinazzo
     Andre Hennicke - Axel
     Suzan Anbeh - Mo

      I Love You is the second best segment of the movie to me. Not because it's the bloodiest but because of the emotions involved in telling the story. The loneliness portrayed by Andre Hennicke as Axel is palatable yet at the same time misguided due to Axel being too needy and untrusting which causes his love to become less about love and more about control. What follows is Axel trying to piece together the missing pieces from his memory and his refusal of the real truth. Suzan Anbeh is great as Mo, who has to be as heartless as possible to prove a point and in return causes what she was hoping to prevent.

Directed by Tom Savini
     Debbie Rochon - Carla
     Tom Savini - Dr. Maurey

     Tom Savini's return to directing couldn't have happened soon enough. Yet with Wet Dreams he has a difficult time with a jumpy story that is a dream within a dream only to find out that it's hiding within another dream by a man being tortured. The acting from Tom Savini and Debbie Rochon is more than acceptable for what their roles required. Savini as a doctor who misguides one character while helping  Rochon, who plays   a abused wife who inflicts bloody revenge against a cheating husband who is more interested in sex with others, even if it's through rape. The problem lies with James Gill's  character, or I should say Gill's acting as he isn't able to pull off the emotions required of him toward the end as he's unbelievable in his repulsion from his own dreams that haunt him every night and in his pain in real life.

Directed by Douglas Buck
     Melodie Simard
     Lena Kleine - Mother

     The Accident is probably the most somber of the shorts in the film as it deals with a mother having to explain death to her daughter. The child played by Melodie Simard is completely believable as she asks innocent questions after witnessing a accident in which a animal and a motorcyclist is killed. Nothing is played for laughs as it deals with the understanding of the fragility of life.  One of the haunting images in this segment is the lingering view of the dead motorcyclist's eye seen through a broken helmet visor as if he's staring at the child and asking why this happened to him. If there is one segment that seems the most out of place in the movie it would be The Accident as it is more of a drama piece than horror.

Directed by Karim Hussain
     Kaniehtiio Horn - The Writer
     Cynthia Wu-Maheux - Junkie Girl

     Vision Stains is to me the one segment that fits the name of the movie the most and as well my favorite. Kaniehtiio Horn is a writer who can only write after draining the eye fluid of dying people and shooting the residue into her own eye. She lives a life of squalor with her dead victim's memory in written form. We're shown that she has been doing this for a long time as her shack is filled with notebook towers of her victims,  until she crosses the line of life when she tries to see what a unborn child sees. This is when the true supernatural comes to bring retribution against her for trying to see what she shouldn't and isn't allowed to see until death. In return to stop the torture of her mind she has to give restitution of her own sight for what she has done. 

Directed by David Gregory
     Lindsay Goranson - Estelle
     Guilford Adams - Greg

     Sweets is the weirdest of all the segments in the movie as it deals with control through emotions and food. Greg, played by Guilford Adams, is so in love with Estelle that he doesn't see her using that love to force feed him to fatten him up for a feast. Lindsay Goranson, who plays Estelle, is hard to place acting wise in the segment as she truly doesn't show any real emotions at the slow mental abuse she gives out to get what she wants. Nothing is truly explained in the segment as at the end it is filled with cannibals that all act like Estelle. Dead and stiff acting for those all around  this segment stop what could have been an interesting segment, yet it's because nothing is explained is why this piece fails completely and instead just turns it into a gross-out segment about gluttony.
Directed by Jeremy Kasten
     Udo Kier - Peg Poett
     Virginia Newcomb - Enola Penny

     The Theatre Bizarre segment runs through the whole movie as it cuts back to this after each segment. The best part of this segment (segments) is Udo Kier as Peg Poett. Yet the major downfall of these is that you don't know what is going on during these except that Kier's character goes from a wooden looking puppet to a flesh and blood man after each segment while Virginia Newcomb's Enola Penny is the exact opposite, transforming from flesh and blood to wooden puppet. There's is no rhyme or reason giving for why this is happening and Kier's character only speaks lines that comments on human nature. The look of these segments is dark and washed out yet nothing is obscured from view. At the end though I was left with more questions than answers for what happened with these segments as well as felt somewhat cheated and let down by the whole movie in general.

     Axel's ultimate gift of love.

     It's easier to be caught up in someone else's story than to live our own.

     Richard Stanley's segment is an adaptation of the short story Mother of Toads by Clark Ashton Smith.

     Each director was given the same budget, schedule and narrative directive. Other than that, they were given free rein to create their 10-20 minute segments.

     This is the first time Tom Savini has directed for a a feature film since 1990's Night Of The Living Dead remake.

Sunday, April 22, 2012


Directed by Richard Stanley

Richard Stanley - Richard
Maggie Moor - Maggie/ Katie

     Nothing is ever quite what it seems at first glance.


     This review is a first for me as I'm reviewing a short film that is unfinished. I try to stay away from unfinished products just to give the filmmakers a fair footing. Yet with this one being directed by Richard Stanley I'm giving it a review for two reasons. One is because this is a film Stanley shows off various film festivals for possible investors. And two, as a lead up to  The Theatre Bizarre.

     A little known fact about Richard Stanley is that he has acted in all of his films that he has lensed. In Black Tulips he plays a version of himself. His character's name is Richard and he is a director. Yet it's Richard's background in the short that is interesting how it plays into the story. Stanley's character is a shaman, and a butcher as well, who tries to help his flatmate and lover Maggie. Maggie, played by Maggie Moore is quite somber in the film as she seems like she lost something in her life yet the character Richard and the small child seem to know her for their whole life. There is a past there that is hinted at yet never explained. The only real hint that is giving is when a unexpected guest shows up and says that Maggie is Katie even though both Maggie and Katie say she's not.

     The look of the short is for the most part clean and straight forward. It's when the before mentioned unexpected guest shows up is when the look and style of the film changes. There was a hint of muted colors when the short starts, yet when the guest arrives the color palate changes and the film get visually darker. This change is a hint at what is to come as you find out that not all is how it should be. It's also at this point in the short that quick flashes of a calf is shown which is jarring due to it creates a atmosphere of unease and trepidation. Another hint is the change in Maggie's look that something isn't quite right, as well as Richard talking about being taught shamanistic rituals that is a hint at what is to come. I'm not going to go into what happens as it will ruin the surprise that happens with Maggie, but I will say that it's not the usual look as it is somewhat more animalistic which make it more beautiful at the same time. One of the drawbacks to the short is the sound design and sound effects as the balance of it off and the spoken lines are sometimes overpowered by the background noise that is going on. Another drawback is the overall look of the short as it is grainy and every so often out of focus. Except for the two drawbacks  Black Tulips is a interesting watch as it Stanley takes a different approach to a well known creature and by doing so adds a air of mysticism to it.

     The lunch that is the unexpected guest.

What's with all the psycho shit man?

     Richard Stanley's short film Incident In An Expanding Universe laid the groundwork for Stanley's film Hardware.

Stanley has directed music videos for Public Image Limited, Fields Of Nephilim, and Renegade Soundwave.

Friday, April 20, 2012


      Yesterday I got an email from Niky Morgan about the Nerdist Channel. It sounds like it could be fun so I'm going to go ahead and post the press release that was sent to me for it.



Hosted by Anthrax founder Scott Ian, the horror FX series joins line-up of programming on the Nerdist YouTube Channel

Los Angeles, CA, April 19, 2012 – Horror movie fans will finally have an insider’s look at the world of special FX makeup with the help of Fangoria and Nerdist Industries. The two companies are forming a diabolical new partnership to bring the DIY make-up series to the newly launched Nerdist Channel on YouTube ( Horror genre fanatic and Anthrax founder and rhythm guitarist Scott Ian will navigate the viewer’s experience. Reknowned masters of gore will teach viewers how to create horror FX makeup that is simply to die for.

“I’ve been neck-deep in blood and guts for the last 30 years playing in Anthrax,” states Scott Ian, “so I couldn’t be more excited to be hosting a show called ‘Blood & Guts’ for you horror and metal fans.”

The Nerdist Channel, a YouTube original content channel, launched on April 2, 2012 with nerd-centric content spanning comic books, video games, movies, pop culture and more. Shows on the channel feature well-known talent such as Neil Patrick Harris, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Rob Zombie, “Weird Al” Yankovic, Harry Knowles and the Nerdist himself, Chris Hardwick.


FANGORIA sliced its way onto the scene in 1979, becoming the only national publication devoted to the modern horror genre. Almost four decades later, FANGORIA is still the number one authority on all things scary! FANGORIA provides the best in horror entertainment and news coverage including the website, magazine, film production and distribution divisions, comic book division, convention circuit, and Dreadtime†Stories series†hosted by Malcolm McDowell. FANGORIA ENTERTAINMENT: We know what scares you!†

Nerdist Industries is a multi-platform creator of genre and popular culture content and a true next generation media company. Founded in 2008, Nerdist is the brainchild of comedian, author, podcaster and new media personality and Talking Dead host Chris Hardwick. In 2011, Nerdist and GeekChicDaily merged to form Nerdist Industries with Hardwick serving as Founder and Chief Creative Officer and digital media entrepreneur Peter Levin, co-founder of GeekChicDaily, serving as Chief Executive Officer. Nerdist Industries consists of a popular website at; a premium YouTube channel (, a top comedy/popular culture podcast network on iTunes, recently named one of the top 10 best comedy podcasts by Rolling Stone and sold as a television show to BBC America; a following of over 1.6 million Twitter fans, which Time Magazine named as one of the 140 most influential brands on Twitter; a book, The Nerdist Way, by The Penguin Group; a plethora of live events and much more. Nerdist Industries investors include Legendary Pictures, Mandalay Enterprises, Machinima CEO Allen DeBevoise, Japanese media juggernaut Yoshimoto Kogyo, Gamespy founder Mark Surfas and Revolution Studio's Joe Roth. Nerdist Industries' partners in its YouTube channel include The Jim Henson Company, Broadway Video Entertainment and The Chernin Company. Nerdist Industries is headquartered at Meltdown Comics in Hollywood, CA

James Miller
(310) 315-4615

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Directed by Gareth Evans

Iko Uwais - Rama
Joe Taslim - Jaka
Yayan Ruhian - Mad Dog

     A SWAT team becomes trapped in a tenement run by a ruthless mobster and his army of killers and thugs.

     It was a busy weekend when I saw this. After watching two films on Saturday, one really, really good and one just so-so, I get to watch Serbuan Maut. This one has gotten so much attention through film festivals that it has played at that it piqued my curiosity about it. Then I got to see the red band trailer for it last year and that basically sealed it for me that I have to see this film. And now over a year later I finally got to see this film thanks to it playing where I live.

      How often can we say that every actor in an action film, I mean a pure action, does a good job? Not very many. Well the ones made in the United States at least. I've seen plenty of Asian martial art movies and most of the time the acting is above normal. Yet in this one, every person on screen was spot on. Even the extras they had did good. Though the main actors stuck out more than the others. Iko Uwais, as Rama, has the lead role in the film as nails it. While most actors in this type of film is more of a one note character, Uwais adds a dept to Rama to make him more than that. He's not a loner type character but has a wife with a baby on the way and it shows in the opening scenes that he cares deeply for them and the look of worry on his face before he leaves. And no, his family doesn't die to send him on a revenge mission. Yes shocking, I know. Don't get me wrong even though he has emotions, he's a bad ass. But the one actor that stole the whole movie was Yayan Ruhian as Mad Dog. If you go and see this film, for any reason, see it for this man. His acting is on par and above with any action star out right now. When he speaks there is a conviction to it (even in the native tongue of the movie, which is Indonesian, you can tell). There not one false thing in his acting from what I could tell.

     I'm sure by now you're probably wondering how was the action in this film since it is a action film. Well the best way to put it is that it was amazing. Even though there is gun play in the film, hell over half the raiding party is wiped out in just the first gun fight, the real fun starts after the ammunition runs low and the guns are discarded. At this point knives came out and bladed weapons emerge as does the hand to hand fights. Don't get me wrong, the gun fights in the movie are better than most, yet the fall to the back ground later on. So what sets the action in this film apart than most is the fights. This is due to Yayan Ruhian and Iko Uwais who did the fight choreography for the film. The minimum fight time is about five minutes starting out and the fight times go up past that. The center piece for the film is the final fight between Rama, his brother, and Mad Dog. This one fight scene runs about twenty minutes with a break of about three minutes in the middle of it. The main reason for why this one fight is memorable is the speed and the precision that is happening on screen. I was, to put it simply, glued to the screen during this fight and even though I knew how it was going to end, I didn't care. I wanted the fight to keep on going for another twenty minutes. I can not stress how vicious yet cool the fight was. And just when you think it's going to end thanks to a light tube into a throat, the bastard just starts to fight harder and faster. Yes, you read that right. The bad guy gets a broken tube shoved into his throat and he just gets more pissed and dishes out even more punishment to his opponents. Which he was kicking both of their asses all over the place already. I didn't mention that Mad Dog stands at most, if he's lucky, five feet tall.

     I'm going to give a big thanks to director Gareth Evans here for doing what should have been done a long time ago in action films and that's pulling the camera back to capture all the action that is going on. There is no shaky cameras or quick cuts every two seconds.  We, the viewers, get to see all the action that going on as well as the brutality that is happening. I have never seen so many faces go into walls as I have in The Raid. I'm not talking about a person falling into the wall. I'm talking about the person's body is picked up and swung horizontally, with great speed by the way, into the wall. Though there was one problem with the action though. That problem is sometimes the camera was to up close to the action and that caused the action to get lost. This didn't happen very often so it didn't take anything away from the film. The film is being hailed as one of the greatest action films ever and damn did it not back that statement up constantly throughout it's almost two hour run time. From a one against four machete fight to Rama taking out almost a whole floor of armed thugs by himself with a knife, this film is a non-stop thrill ride that barely lets up until the end. Even at the end you just want to see it again right away. Now all I have to do is wait to see the sequel Berandal and it cannot come out soon enough.

     Thug's splitting headache from being shot in the head at point blank range not once, not twice , but three times.

     Go to work and have fun.

     The original title "Serbuan Maut" means Deadly Invasion in English.

     Yayan Ruhian, who played the Mad Dog character, had once trained Pencak Silat for Pasukan Pengamanan Presiden (the Indonesian Presidential Security Forces- equivalent to US Secret Service) in 1989 and for the Indonesian Military Police Corps in the early 1990s.

     Every actor who played a member of the SWAT team went through a training program with KOPASKA to study the techniques used in the force including weapons use and hand signals.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


     Here we are about two months out from the release of Prometheus and small bits of the behind the scenes in that universe is being released, which while staying away from spoilers, I watch every single one.

     The newest one was just releases today and it's kinda creepy, yet just adds to the alien universe that has been established  already and adds more layers to it.

     This time it's the full Weyland Industries David video which we got to see a snippet of in the last viral video.


Monday, April 16, 2012


Directed by Drew Goddard

Kristen Connolly - Dana
Chris Hemsworth - Curt
Anna Hutchison - Jules

     Five friends go for a break at a remote cabin in the woods, where they get more than they bargained for. Together, they must discover the truth behind the cabin in the woods.

     It's was a packed weekend for movie watching for me. I got to see three films, two of which were festival standouts of which this is one of them. I should also note that there is three films I'm staying away from all spoilers from that are coming out this year with this being one of them. The only thing I've heard or read about this film ranges from it's a genre changer to don't let anyone spoil it for you. So I'm going to try to keep all the real surprises out of this review as much as possible while not making what you're reading completely boring. So if I have to say something I'll put a spoiler warning before said line or sentences when ever possible.

     Well how am I going to really review a film where I don't want to spoil anything on. I could just review the first two thirds of it as what we seen in the trailer all happens in that amount of time. Actually that sounds just the thing to do, as to go to much more past that part is to ruin the real surprise that is in store for those that watch it.

     We all know the set up for most horror films, classic creep fests, and torture porn types by now, well at least those that like horror do. You have the jock, the slut, the goody goody girl, the best friend, and usually a book worm type. In this one those types are in a way here as well, kinda in a way. The jock character is played by Chris Hemsworth who in the film is more than what he seems as he knows how to think and actually isn't dumb. The goody goody girl, played by Kristen Connolly, is really the good girl even though she says differently toward the end of the film. We also know this as when the movie starts she mentions that she knew sleeping with her college professor would end up like it did. Yet the one character that stuck out the most was the best friend character Marty, played by Fran Kranz. His character was also the most interesting of all due to even though he was stoned through most of the first half of the movie, his insight was spot on about almost everything that happened as well as trying to make his friends see reason in what they were doing. Kranz also adds a lot of perfectly timed humor to his role that adds a lot to it as well as lightens the tension as there are plenty of times that this comes in handy.

     I said that I wasn't going to try and spoil anything in the film, yet I should have probably put it that I wasn't going to spoil the last third of it. The film starts just like any other usual friends go to  alone cabin or get away in the woods. The characters are all introduced one by one and the stereotypes are seen right from the start which we find out are somewhat skewed as each one has an extra something that makes them more than the stereotype. Along with that we are introduced to three workers that are commenting on not screwing things up this weekend in a bunker complex played by Amy Acker, Richard Jenkins, and the ever very watchable Bradley Whitford. It's not long before the friends run into the the usual creepy redneck slash doom sayer that freak half of them out and piss off the other half. And as usual before the doomed ones leave the doomer warns them of what is to come. Now if all this sounds somewhat familiar, that's because it is. Most horror films start out this same way. And yes, the friends start dieing one by one. Yet it's what's happening behind everything that makes this so interesting and different from the rest of what is out there that makes this completely different. It also makes complete sense as well once everything is said and done.

     While all this might sound awfully run of the mill, it is. In a way. What Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard has managed to do is take the basic plot and add on something to it that is so simple yet at the same time so smart that it makes complete sense. I will say that this next sentence will give a hint to what is going on so those that don't want to know what happens skip ahead a little bit.  The film, story wise, gives us as viewers a look at why what happens in the movies we love happens in a very intelligent way. While the film is a horror film, those that are used to these movies won't really be scared, but I was thrilled by what was going on on the screen in front of me. What these two filmmakers have done is create a love letter to the genre while at the same time making a complaint of the state of the genre and what is wrong with it. This sound confusing now but once you have seen the film you will completely understand why I put it this way. We as viewers are so used to seeing the kill and wanting to see the kill that we forgot that story does matter in our favorite genre, and more and more that is being forgotten. Whendon and Goddard didn't forget this and makes sure we remember that. There's going to be reviews lambasting the film for not having this or that, for not being bloody enough (if you see a review that says that, stop reading it cause they haven't seen the film), or it's just a rip of every other horror film. This happens when a film comes along that has brains and is a commentary on the genre while trying to be entertaining.  I'm going to end there as I really want to talk more about it but to do so would have me going into the stuff I shouldn't talk about as half the fun is the surprise in this one. Just know that this film is worth seeing and is a complete joy ride.

     Sorry, I'm not going to put anything down for this (though I really, REALLY want to, but I'm not as it will spoil the film.


     On the white board in the control room when the staff are taking bets on the victims potential killers, "Deadites" are listed which is a direct reference to the Evil Dead films.

     The film was shot in 2009 yet was shelved for over two years due to the financial trouble at MGM. It wasn't until Lionsgate bought the film that it saw the light of day.

     The film's release date was postponed because the studio wanted to convert it to 3D, despite objections from Producer Joss Whedon and director Drew Goddard.

     Whedon while giving a interview with Total Film magazine has said of the movie:
"On another level it's a serious critique of what we love and what we don't about horror movies. I love being scared. I love that mixture of thrill, of horror, that objectification/identification thing of wanting definitely for the people to be alright but at the same time hoping they’ll go somewhere dark and face something awful. The things that I don't like are kids acting like idiots, the devolution of the horror movie into torture porn and into a long series of sadistic comeuppances. Drew and I both felt that the pendulum had swung a little too far in that direction."

Friday, April 13, 2012


GYO (2012)
Directed by Takayuki Hirao

     Something in Okinawa reeks, and it isn't long before Tadashi and his girlfriend Kaori realize that the smell are coming from dead fish, which are walking out of the sea.

     As those that read my reviews by now know I like to mix things up somewhat with what I review from the truly awful to the surprising films that I wasn't expecting to be good. Anime is one of the genres that is usually looked over when someone searching for something in the horror genre. There's so much to be explored in anime that you can spend a month just finding titles that sound interesting. Gyo is one of those titles.

     I read the manga for Gyo  awhile back when it first came out in the states back in 2003. It had a very different take on the monster formula than what I was used to reading.  It had a weird vibe where you didn't really know what exactly was going on, and that carries over into the anime as well. Then again, how often do we, as viewers get to see fish on land, and blood thirsty as well. Not so much outside of a Mytho's tale. The design of the fish is very realistic which adds a depth of believability to the anime, or as much as possible. The character designs for the cast is different that in most, as the design for them is more realistic as well. The cast though is cookie cutter for the most part as you have a female in love that is cut off from her lover. With her is her two friends, one more of a bookworm and the other a oversexed tramp who only is out for herself.  After the walking fish start showing up the divide between the friends start showing as Kaori, who is the main character, leaves to the dismay of said friends, the other two start trying to kill the other. Kaori though makes it home to find that her hometown is overrun with aquatic life and with the help of a reporter tries to figure out what exactly is going on while trying to find her lover.

     While Gyo is interesting, it is not without problems. One being that everything happens very quickly and character development is left in the dust as once the characters are introduced what you see is what you get. No more, no less. While what is going on is somewhat explained, toward the end of movie a whole other aspect to the story is told but not elaborated on. That one bit of information  makes the story expand only to be forgotten completely no more than a minute later. Another problem is the main person we follow at first is a strong female lead, then halfway through just becomes a cry baby, not at what is going on around her or the fact that her love is missing, but because she is blocked by from going over a bridge of all things. One more fault is that one of the creatures that is shown in the distance is massive, and looks like it could be a whale, yet we only see a glimpse of it. I will say that it's not all bad. The pacing is well done as there really isn't a dull moment, specially once the fish start showing up. The story for the most part is very concise except for the stuff I mentioned before. While not really scary, the elements are there to make a truly great film if more time was giving to the movie. Instead we get a fast paced story where nothing is truly explained, yet we are treated to lots possibilities.  

     Drowning by walking fish.

     It's like the march of the underworld!

     Gyo is based on the manga of the same name by Junji Ito.

     Some Junji Ito's manga work include Uzimaki, or Spiral, and  Tomie.

     Uzimaki was made into a live action film in 2000. And Tomie has been made into a film series in Japan in 1999 and has 8 live action sequels.