Saturday, December 21, 2013

Movie Roundup: Just Some Random Stuff...

So despite my lack of posting lately, I have actually watched a bunch of movies, just never obviously got around to writing about them. I shall now do so in my Movie Roundup, Random Stuff edition!

Carrie (2013)
I was nervous as hell about what they would do to one of my favorite horror flicks, but as with all the remakes, I gave Carrie the benefit of the doubt. But... I fucking hated Carrie. There were some things that I was okay with - they changed the gym teacher's name back to Desjardin like in the book, added in Sue Snell's pregnancy, and did a nice job updating the flick to the modern day with the Internet video of Carrie's locker room humiliation. However, I was not sold on any of the performances. Though Chloe Moretz did her best, she just did not have the same feeling about her to make her as sympathetic or vulnerable as she should have been. I hated the scenes where Carrie was practicing her telekinesis because that totally went against who Carrie is supposed to be and the shock and redemption you're supposed to feel during the prom massacre. Moretz played Carrie too confident and rebellious against her mother. Julianne Moore was actually good casting, but I just could not get Piper Laurie out of my mind. That is one of my favorite performances ever, and I don't think anyone could have topped her. Sue and the rest of the girls were your basic stick-thin, pretty, popular bitches and they weren't memorable at all. The prom sequence was okay enough, but damn did I hate the deaths of Billy and Chris. The way her face was sticking out of the windshield? Ridiculous. 

One of the worst things about Carrie was that I went to see the movie with someone who had not seen the original before, and the remake was so bad that he said that he had no desire to see the original! I tried to tell him otherwise, and I only hope he listened. I tried not to compare the movie too much with the original while I was watching it, but with a film as big as Carrie and one that I admire so much, it was really hard not to be critical.

Curse of Chucky (2013)
I wrote a short post about how stoked I was for Curse of Chucky after seeing his new look for this sixth installment. For the most part, Don Mancini and crew did manage to take Chucky back to his scarier roots, however, I'm still not a big fan of the story they came up with. So Chucky is mad because a woman he kidnapped and whose husband he murdered called the police on him? Really? That's shocking! And it didn't really match up for me that this was the same night he transferred himself into the doll because where was his partner Eddie who left him? Not explained. As for the rest of the movie, I kinda dug it. It had a very old-school, old-dark-house feel to it with the location, and Chucky freaked me out just as much as he ever did in some specific scenes. Though his hair was a little too long, I was happy that they went back to Chucky's non-scarred look, and really disappointed when they brought the scars back again toward the end. Brad Dourif is fantastic as ever, and even gets some screen time himself during flashbacks. His daughter Fiona carries the film well as paraplegic Nica, and the other characters are fun and refreshing for the series. There's even some surprises that I never saw coming, and actually the whole plot was constructed in such a way that I never knew what direction they were going to go in. A very good installment for the series, and loads better than the atrocity that was Seed of Chucky. Here's hoping for more Child's Play fun in the future - and hopefully they'll actually put "Child's Play" in the title this time. I'm getting a little sick of this "of Chucky" crap.

How much did I love seeing the stuff with Andy at the end? A LOT, I tell you. A LOT.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1958)
There have been several adaptations of The Body Snatchers novel since 1955, and the only one I had seen was 2007's The Invasion which I don't even remember at all. Part of this 1958 version is very cool even by today's standards but I admit to getting a little bored toward the conclusion. I like how the film was introduced as a frame story; it gave good reason for the voice over and gave the audience some insights that they might not have had just from the plot itself. The effects work on the blanks and the pods was impressive, even that bubbly, sudsy effect, and a bit more gross than I was expecting. As for another effect - the cheese effect that is possible in any kind of B horror movie - I was happy to see that it was quite minimal. The movie has a very serious, creepy undertone stemming from the fact the more pods and replicas that are created, and the longer they go without sleep, the more likely it is that our main characters will fall victim to it as well. Very excited to see the Donald Sutherland version now, because, well, Donald Sutherland.

The Return of the Living Dead (1985)
Holy goddamn, you guys. I don't really have much to say about this movie other than that it was FUCKING AWESOME. Why, oh WHY, have I never seen this before? I loved every second of it and actually haven't had that much fun watching a movie in a long time. I'd really like to do a proper review of it soon, but I'll have to see it again in order to catch me up on the specifics. For now, just know that I am in love with this movie and want to have its baby.

The Black Cat (1981)
Definitely NOT Edgar Allen Poe's Black Cat, that's for sure. Shame, because that's one of my favorite short stories. Anywho, this Black Cat is of the Lucio Fulci variety, that mad genius who entertained the hell out of me with The House by the Cemetery. Sadly, he couldn't do the same with The Black Cat. I was beyond happy to find out that Patrick Magee, my favorite bushy eyebrowed actor, was in this one, and I love cats so I love seeing them  even when they're all evil and scratching and killing people. The problem though is that the movie lacks Fulci's famous gore and is mostly a bore. Fulci does once again show his love for doing lots of close-ups on people's eyes but nothing about this movie is up to snuff with other movies in the same genre. I'm bored now.

Bruiser (2000)
Well, hm. This was interesting. Actually on second thought, no it wasn't. This wasn't a good movie and it hurts me to admit that about something my beloved George Romero did, but this was just... weird. I mean, was there supposed to be some metaphor here about standing up for yourself when you lose your old identity and have the freedom to do what you want? Or something? Because this sure was an odd way to do it. The premise of the story is really just kind of stupid, with a guy waking up one day to find out that his face is nothing but a blank white mask. How or why this happened is never questioned by anyone, and main character Henry Creedlow runs with it too easily, immediately taking out anybody who makes him feel like the doormat he used to be. Boring, silly, unbelievable. Didn't like it.


  1. Return of the Living Dead, on top of being freaking awesome, has one of the greatest soundtracks in all of horror! I am glad you finally saw it. Ernie is the man. I missed a chance to see a reunion at a recent convention, and I could kick myself.

    Ugh, I have only heard bad things about Carrie.

  2. After about 20 reviews that I've read of Carrie the remake, I know to stay far away~

  3. The Invasion with Nicole Kidman is worth revisiting. Its not too bad. And its surprising you're just now seeing Return of the Living Dead. You should go for the sequels!

  4. I went to see Carrie on Halloween morning and the only other person in the theater was a lady wearing dressed up like Micky Mouse from Fantasia. No where near as hellish as seeing hunger games with a full house, some dude was shaking the entire row of chairs, 3 cellphones went off and the girl sitting next to me spent most of the movie crying. First world problems.

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  6. Love, love, love! Return of the Living Dead! This movie for me is a gem worthy of much praise. I especially love the various spooky sets and props used throughout the movie such as the graveyard, medical supply building and the funeral home.

  7. The 1978 version of invasion of the body snatchers is my favorite by far, you should definitively check it out. Another worthy remake was Abel Ferrara's Body Snatchers (1993)

  8. Darlin'. took you this long to finally see Return of The Living Dead?!
    Well, least now you've finally seen it! UuU And am glad you're enjoying it!