Hello to all those faithfully reading and hopefully enjoying this effort to make even the worst horror movie more watcha... aw, screw that - I'm not that good. If a movie makes you cringe because yet another batch of unlikable teens that are pushing 30 are inching toward their deaths, having a party no one does anywhere ever, a paranormal movie is boring you to tears with unending pans of empty rooms, or thanks to CGI technology when people finally bite it, their blood squirts everywhere except on the victim, the ground, the people next to them... you're in good company and this is the right place for you.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

MOVIES YOU CAN PASS OVER BUT I'M GIVING THEM A PASSING MENTION




Whoa, What Stinkers!

Usually I don't complain (unless I think it's funny) about the movies I watch, good, bad or really, really BAD. It seems I've gotten hold of some real bummers lately but hey, see motto above, right? So with a grin and a grimace, here's some of the barely mentionable cinema I've viewed recently.

Last Kind Words (2012):  This was actually the better of the films I'm highlighting here (even if it appears to steal its movie poster idea from Silent Hill: Revelations) - it's just that for a 'horror' movie it's really a dreary, depressing look at a disintegrating family and you know the movie will NOT have a good ending, or even a satisfying one. Eli, 17, has moved with his mother and father on his father's childhood's friend's farm. While the owner appears rich, with lots of property and buildings, he is actually a step away from losing the place. 

He also has a secret. When Eli discovers that part of the farm is fenced off and wants to explore, their landlord (Brad Dourif) very curtly tells him to stay away from that area. That is of course an instant invitation to explore - and he finds out in the middle of nowhere a sweet girl named Amanda who becomes his only friend. When the landlord discovers that Eli has seen Amanda he goes ballistic. And that's where the movie loses any sense of... sense. 

Apparently, whomever is hung from a tree on this piece of property stays there as a spirit. Why? Pfft - no explanations are given of ANYTHING. An old black gentleman accused of... something long, long ago is hung from one of the trees and his 'spirit' finally freed when Eli lowers his body from the tree. And then to his 'horror' he finds why Eli wants him away from that part of the property - some obscure story about the guy killing his father by accident, blaming his sister and hanging her out there - so of course, the sister being Amanda is now stuck out there. 

Her brother loves her... umm... a bit too much and wants to be with her forever so he ends up hanging himself with her skeleton from the same tree. She doesn't want to be eternally stuck to him so begs Eli to cut them both down. He does, knowing it means he loses her.

Our last scene of this doom and gloom fest is of Eli's mother, quite a bit older and alone and now owner of the property greeting a family that will live there to help her with it. There's a teenage daughter with them - she looks over the fenced area and sees Eli, same age, waiting to talk to her. He had, of course, hanged himself to... what? Amanda was gone, he wasn't going to meet up with her so why did he kill himself? We don't know, all we're grateful for is that this boring angst fest is over.



Super Hybrid (2010) Australian: A copy of Stephen King's classic Christine this is not - which is the only thing you can give it credit for. Otherwise it is a lame creature feature with head shaking stupidity and a waste of acting talents (Oded Fehr being on top of that list).  Late one night, a mysterious car is brought into the Chicago police impound garage after a deadly traffic accident. 


The on-call mechanics soon discover the car has a mind of its own. With hundreds of horsepower and two tons of reinforced steel at its command, it's a seemingly unstoppable killing machine capable of outrunning -- and outwitting -- humans. Why? Well because it's a shapeshifting tentacled monster from God-knows-where that's why. Silly movie watcher - did you expect a rational explanation? So basically the whole movie is a group of people conveniently trapped in a police impound garage running from a car that can become any car it chooses and picks them off one by one - but much MUCH too slowly. Sigh.


The Open Door (2008) Australian: Being a teenager is sooooo hard. And unfair. What, was this supposed to be surprising in some way? The movie starts with some vague statistics about strange murders and other crimes happening on full moons. Duh. So our protagonist and generally stupid teenager Angelica sits at home, angry at being grounded from going to a party. She tunes into a legendary pirate radio broadcast, hosted by a strange figure known as the Oracle, that only appears on the nights of the full moon. This Oracle was supposed to be an urban legend, but of course for the movie it's real. All we see is a van with a large antenna broadcasting from the top of a hill.

So Angelica lets all her angst and venom out to the Oracle, a woman who follows when the man invites the needy to call in and talk to her. She basically wishes all her enemies will eat dirty worms and die and... well, that's pretty much the movie. Be careful what you wish for, blah blah blah. Some unseen entity inhabits the partygoers one by one (oh yeah, she sneaks out and goes to the party anyway) and people die until she is the only one left - and off to jail for killing all her friends. 

The radio (you know this is foreign - they still listen to the radio) is upside down on the floor. Upside down the station appears as 666. Then a paramedic, even though this is a CRIME SCENE picks up the radio and puts it on the counter. Nice.

Her parents, who were out for the night are shown in an open hotel room - well, a bloody hand is shown - we assume they're dead too. We also see that the Oracle and the announcer are the same person (one hand is male, the other obviously female, that's all we see of, umm, it) and as the sun rises, the antenna goes back into the van and it drives off, waiting for the next full moon. Massive duh.


Unrest (2006): Now I KNOW I've seen a foreign film just like this one about a group of medical students who suffer mysterious deaths after they start working on a cadaver who's spirit is apparently 'not at rest'. I can't find it now for the life of me (sorry for that). I also know it was a hell of a lot better than this sorry mess. This one is supposedly of a woman who was some sort of archaeologist in Brazil who disturbed thousands of Aztecs souls in a dig (They're probably pissed off because Aztecs belong in Mexico.) who went psycho, became a prostitute, a killer and finally commits suicide.

So these hapless students cut her up, noticing that she moves every once in a while, seems warm to the touch, and oh yeah, they start to die. And proper medical protocol (as well as continuity) goes right out the window. I'm actually surprised they actually bothered with gloves. We're talking about people spraying others in the face with body fluids (don't ask) and no one is wearing masks, people touching the body then touching other people, etc. Yuck. 

The corpse couldn't decide whether to keep its eyes closed or open - it's different in a lot of scenes. In the end, when of course one girl who lives in the hospital because she can't afford a dorm (which I swear was in the other movie too) cuts up the body to drag it to the incinerator, we get a reappearing/disappearing blood trail as the camera keeps cutting away... oh brother.


The only interesting thing was the info on the movie: The film was shot in a real morgue, where the cast experienced some haunting dreams. The trailer claims that real bodies were used. However, this is not the first film to use real bodies. In the 1982 film Poltergeist, in the scene where the mother falls into the pool and the skeletons attack her, the skeletons used were real, and were buried in the spot of the set. Likewise, in the 1987 Hong Kong film Men Behind the Sun, a genuine child's body was used for an autopsy scene.

And they left out that in the movie Apocalypse Now, Francis Ford Coppola wanted an 'authentic' war feel although it was made in The Phillipines and so there are real bodies strewn throughout that movie also.