Entries Tagged 'horror movies' ↓

Editor’s Column #1: Honeymooning with Horror

Written by Sarah “Fatally Yours” Jahier Hey, check it out…this is new! For your entertainment and my sanity, I’ll be spewing sharing my opinions in a weekly/monthly/whenever-I-get-to-it column. Topics will vary widely and I’ll talk about whatever I please in the realm of horror! Onwards, Fatal Fiends! Horror and I have been going steady for many [...]

The Wolfman

I'm of two minds when it comes to The Wolfman.

First Mind says:

The Wolfman's a classic movie monster, but there's only so much you can do with him. He doesn't have a lot going on in the charisma department, lacks basic fashion sense and his table manners are atrocious. Unless you're willing to reboot the nature of the monster, it's an almost impossible sell to the casual (Twilight-friendly) moviegoer. Face it. Werewolves are always going to play second fiddle to their cousins of the night, vampires. Just do the best you can with the material. Give the hardcore fans what they want: cool transformations, great locations, gory attacks and a few well-placed nods to the original. For the most part, that's what you get here. I can certainly think of worse ways to spend two hours -- like staring at a blank screen, but that's for another day...

Second Mind rebuttal:

Holy crap, Universal! What the heck were you guys smoking? $100 + million on a genre picture with such limited appeal!? And R-rated at that!? This film is a tower of fail built upon fail. All those signs of red flags during production turned out to be true. Blunt and Del Toro have zero chemistry, but that's okay because the story is mostly about working out Mommy and Daddy issues. And speaking of Daddy, Anthony Hopkins phones in his entire performance. It's as if someone found an old copy of Ang Lee's Hulk script lying around and decided to do some creative Find and Replace. The big Third Act reveal should be a surprise to no one. Hugo Weaving was the most interesting character in it all. Pity the story wasn't told more from his perspective.

25 Screams (part v)

And now we're down to the Final Five...

5. Pitch Black - this pick might throw you for a loop at first, but Pitch Black is basically a horror movie set on another planet. Fantastic creature designs, badass anti-hero and non-cookie cutter characters for the most part.

4. A Tale of Two Sisters - 2009's The Uninvited was a dumbed-down remake this brilliant South Korean thriller -- ugh! Has one of the best twists since the Sixth Sense.

3. Let The Right One In - I hear the novel is actually creepier than the film -- don't know how that's even possible. No sparklies here, just two lonely souls finding each other -- with a couple of bodies along the way.

2. 28 Days Later - A fresh take on a well-worn concept. Great music as well.

1. Frailty - Probably one of the most underrated films of the decade. Period.

And those are my picks. Whew!

25 Screams (part iv)

Now we crack my top 10...

10. The Orphanage (El Orfanato) - downright creepy. Also manages to pull the heart strings at the same time.

9. Phone (Pon) - One Missed Call did the haunted phone thing, but this Korean film goes someplace darker and more interesting. There's a little girl who just steals the film from the grown-ups.

8. The Others - great pacing.

7. The Grudge - one of the few occasions where I liked the remake more than the original.

6. Shaun of the Dead - horror/comedy is probably hardest genre hybrid to pull off, but British Zomedy does it with amazing ease.

25 Screams (part iii)

15. Dog Soldiers

The Descent seems to get all the attention, but this other Neil Marshall film was far more entertaining. A training exercise goes awry when a group of soldiers are ambushed by a pack of werewolves. Still waiting on that sequel...

14. Underworld

A mash up The Matrix, Blade, American Werewolf in London and Romeo & Juliet. All for under 25 million! Incredible production values. Kicked off a solid franchise.

13. Hellboy

What kind of Svengali-like hold does Ron Perlman have over Guillermo Del Toro?

"Forget about Vin Diesel! You'll cast me as the lead in Hellboy! MUAHAHAHA!"

Seriously, Perlman was made for the role. And I don't think there's another director capable of handling this dark yet quirky comic book universe from creator Mike Mignola.

12. Paranormal Activity

No stars + no budget + no CG effects equaled one of the year's biggest hits. The Blair Witch of the Twenty-First century, with a better story.

11. [rec]

The remake, Quarantine, is better known to American audiences, but this Spanish film's claustrophobic take on the zombie genre was a breath of fresh air.

25 Screams (part ii)

20. Constantine

Angels, Demons and a man caught in the middle. This supernatural-actioner was unfortunately more style than substance, but nevertheless entertaining.

19. Skeleton Key

Solid thriller about a hospice nurse who begins to suspect that her patient is the target of supernatural shenanigans -- almost wore out its welcome with some bump-in-the-night clichés. It kind of plays out like an extended Twilight Zone episode with a nice twist at the end. Excellent incorporation of American folklore.

18. Nightwatch

Cool Russian import about warring factions of supernatural beings. A little hard to follow at times, but visually a treat.

17. Blade II

Some of the effects are dated and it doesn't quite match the intensity of the original, but this Guillermo Del Toro helmed sequel holds its own as the Daywalker reluctantly teams up with the Vampire Nation in order to deal with an even bigger threat.

16. Resident Evil

Haven't you heard? Women can't open movies. Apparently, neither has Milla Jovovich, because she was busy finishing the fourth installment of this popular video game adaptation -- one of the few successful video game adaptations. No deep story here. Decent build up though. Kill or be killed. Throw in Michelle Rodriguez's scowl and you've got a party.

(more to come...)