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Posts Tagged ‘ghosts’

House

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

tn_houseThat’s a good feeling when you watch a movie that you don’t remember being all that special back in the ’80s but now it seems like a gem. Last Halloween that happened to me with FROM BEYOND, this year it was HOUSE (1986).

All I remembered was haunted house, George Wendt (and/or John Ratzenberger), something about Vietnam. Maybe kinda funny. All those things are true except for Ratzenberger, who is in part 2. But the star is 10-years-after-CARRIE William Katt as Cobb, a Stephen-King-level-popularity novelist who’s going through some troubles. First we think it’s just that his old Auntie who raised him (Susan French, JAWS 2) hung herself. Then we find out he’s still hurt by his divorce from a soap star (Kay Lenz, DEATH WISH 4: THE CRACKDOWN). And writing his memoir is dredging up painful memories of Vietnam (“The war?” a fan asks). And he still hasn’t given up on finding his missing son.

Jesus, that’s alot of problems. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Conjuring

Sunday, July 21st, 2013

tn_conjuringI’m always open to a James Wan movie just because I love DEATH SENTENCE so much. But everything else he’s done (until FAST AND FURIOUS 7 next summer) is horror, so it’s pretty different. SAW was okay, I kinda liked INSIDIOUS, haven’t seen the other one (DEAD SILENCE) yet. I probly wouldn’t have rushed out to see this except I heard good word including from some of you commenters who I trust.

Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga play Ed and Lorraine Warren, supernatural investigators or demonologists. They’re actually based on a real couple who famously investigated the cases that AMITYVILLE HORROR and A HAUNTING IN CONNECTICUT and I think GHOST DAD and CASPER MEETS WENDY were based on, and wrote several books about this type of shit. I guess this is kind of like CONFESSIONS OF A DANGEROUS MIND where the movie pretends to believe their story and tells it as they would tell it. (read the rest of this shit…)

Mama

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Usuatn_mamally a director you like producing somebody else’s movie doesn’t mean much. See for example Sam Raimi. Love the guy’s directorial works, but look at the stuff he and his company produced – not necessarily the seal of quality. I’m starting to see Guillermo del Toro is different, though. I still gotta see THE ORPHANAGE, but most people seem to speak highly of it. I loved DON’T BE AFRAID OF THE DARK and now this one is pretty good. These last two are movies where he found new filmatists who had done short films and helped them to make a feature.

In this case the director is Andres Muschietti, who wrote the script with Neil Cross and his sister Barbara Muschietti. (That’s kinda cool, I don’t know of another brother-sister filmmaking team other  than the Wachowskis. And I guess Joie Lee wrote CROOKLYN.) They’re “adapting” it from their short film of MAMÁ, but I put adapted in quotes because there really isn’t a story in the short version, it’s basically just a cool shot (which is replicated in the feature version). I have no idea how del Toro figured out from that clip that this guy could direct a real movie that tells a story and has acting in it, but somehow he guessed right. (read the rest of this shit…)

House of Voices

Tuesday, September 18th, 2012

a.k.a. SAINT ANGE

When I watched THE TALL MAN recently I thought it was writer/director Pascal Laugier’s first English language picture. Turns out his one feature before MARTYRS was also in English. Coincidentally this was produced by Christophe Gans, whose CRYING FREEMAN I reviewed recently too. Laugier was apparently Gans’s assistant, and director of the BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLF making-of documentaries. (I wonder what kind of crazy unpredictable plot turns those had?) I guess he also appears in the movie itself, playing the assistant to Machemort, whoever that is. I wonder if he’s friends with Mark Dacascos? (read the rest of this shit…)

Poltergeist III

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

POLTERGEIST III is not a very good movie, but I will go out on a limb and say that it’s a decent try, considering the circumstances. They only have Heather O’Rourke and Zelda Rubinstein returning, not the rest of the family. But at least they found a way to mix it up in location and filmatic style.

The director is Gary Sherman (VICE SQUAD). He co-wrote it with Brian Taggert (VISITING HOURS). IMDb also says that Steve Feke (WHEN A STRANGER CALLS, MAC & ME) worked on it uncredited. In this installment Carol Anne has gone to live with her mom’s sister (Nancy Allen), who is newly married to Tom Skerritt, who also has a pouty teenage daughter (Lara Flynn Boyle). They all live in a fancy new skyscraper in Chicago, which Skerritt is the bigshot manager of.
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Poltergeist II: The Other Side

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

tn_poltergeistiiWell, POLTERGEIST was a movie that people loved, so the best thing to do is to get the surviving cast members back together four years later (the actress who played the older daughter had been murdered), but not Spielberg or Hooper. The director this time is credited as Brian Gibson (WHAT’S LOVE GOT TO DO WITH IT) but I bet Tobe Hooper secretly was uncredited director to make up for not getting full control last time. You can’t disprove it so go ahead and add it into wikipedia if you want.
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Poltergeist

Monday, June 4th, 2012

tn_poltergeistBack when I was doing the Spielberg marathon somebody suggested I should review POLTERGEIST, and I thought it was a good idea. Oh shit, today is the 30th anniversary of the movie’s release! I guess we’ll do it today.

It definitely fits in with the Spielberg marathon. Tobe Hooper is the credited director, but Spielberg was a very hands-on producer and writer, and it seems way more like his directorial works than his other productions do. It has good, natural performances by kids and adults, smoothly choreographed camera moves, a suburban mid-west setting, state-of-the-art-at-the-time visual effects, people looking in awe at glowing light. Like E.T. (which came out one week later) it has a little boy with a room full of STAR WARS toys. The score is by Jerry Goldsmith, but is used similar to how Spielberg uses John Williams. There’s a group of scientists in a specialized field (like JAWS, CLOSE ENCOUNTERS, even JURASSIC PARK). There’s not as much that reminds me of Hooper – just TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE 2’s Lou Perryman in a bit part as a guy working on the house, and a pit of rotting corpses at the end. That part seemed like something he’d be into.
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Dark Shadows

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

tn_darkshadowsa.k.a. TIM BURTON’S WHITE BLACULA

I didn’t expect to write a review of this movie, but I think I liked it more than everybody else, so I figured I should stick up for it. I mean, I don’t necessarily plan to watch it again in my life, but it has an odd tone that I enjoyed and shows signs of life in ol’ Tim Burton. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Innkeepers

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

tn_innkeepersTHE INNKEEPERS is the new one from Ti West, the guy that did HOUSE OF THE DEVIL. This one doesn’t have the same retro trappings (I still believe if I came across HOUSE on cable and didn’t know what it was I would think it really was made around 1980) but it has a similar attitude about taking its sweet time getting to the horror part. In this one I really appreciated that because I almost preferred just hanging out with the characters to watching them get scared. (read the rest of this shit…)

Always

Tuesday, January 17th, 2012

tn_alwaysspielbergALWAYS is very cutesy and sentimental, it’s got some pretty weak comedic bits and it’s definitely the weakest full-length Spielberg I’ve watched in this marathon so far. But it’s still pretty good, and with some things nobody could’ve done as well as Spielberg.

This one’s about the pilots who dump the red stuff on forest fires, and the Tom Cruise of red-stuff-dumpers is former shark expert and Close Encounterer Richard Dreyfus. The Anthony Edwards is John Goodman and the Kelly McGillis is Holly Hunter. Actually, Dreyfus looks kinda like Paul Newman in this one, strutting around in aviators, leather jacket, baseball cap and grey mustache. The point is he thinks he’s awesome, and everybody else agrees. His girl seems to have when are we gonna settle down? type issues, but he makes her happy by buying her a nice dress, something you don’t see around the base much because she’s the only woman there. (read the rest of this shit…)