***Official 21st Annual HTF October Scary Movie Challenge 2020***

dana martin

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First Time Viewing
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27. Häxan :emoji_star: :emoji_star: :emoji_star:

I had seen a brief snippet of the 4K restoration of this online, after Criterion had announced that they were going to release this. And that restoration definitely lives up to the hype beautiful print with appropriately associated music. Told in a series of seven vignettes, from medieval times until the early 20th century. All this is based on research filmed between 1919-1921. Told in a nice linear format, We are shown a progression , and given information with an approximation of how many were killed due to the persecution of possible witchcraft, as the progression goes on to where it gets to the end of the story. You notice a change and start to pick up small subtle hints that it's not witchcraft and maybe something else. A lot of this is explained that most of the issues or ailments that were inflicting these people wrongly accused of witchcraft were either hysteria or some other medical issue that today would be commonly treated. Mental illness, physical deformities or any other associated issues would have been persecuted by the church who at that time was the governing body.


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BobO'Link

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The grandkids went home early yesterday morning so I had a very productive movie watching day:

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A pre-built double-feature featuring Planet Terror and Death Proof along with fake movie trailers made by several directors.

I've seen Planet Terror before. An experimental bio weapon is released turning thousands into zombie like creatures. A stripper, her shady mechanic ex-boyfriend, a strong-willed doctor, the local sheriff, and an assortment of various people must join forces to survive the night. Cherry, the stripper (Rose McGowan), loses a leg so they rig up a machine gun prosthesis. You *need* to see her battle flesh eating zombies with the appendage. It's a very fun film.

Death Proof was a first time viewing. The first third is a bit of a snooze as we meet Stuntman Mike (Kurt Russell) who builds "death proof" cars to stalk people and murder them. We see a trio of girls in a bar and Stuntman Mike picks up a 4th, offering her a ride home. She doesn't go home... Mike survives the crash (the car is "death proof only if you're in the driver's seat" he tells the 4th) and stalks another trio. But this trio isn't the "helpless babe" type... The last act, where he goes after the 2nd trio, is a very well done chase/crash sequence and lots of fun. You just have to make it past the first half of the film.

EDIT: I forgot to add that these are full blown crap theater versions complete with scratches, dirt, flecks, jumping edits, burned out sections (with appropriate "Sorry" cards from "management"). I've read that people left the theater after seeing Planet Terror and the "intermission" began because they thought that was it when it's a full imitation of a double-feature Saturday at your local run down theater. It's a real fun way to watch the pair.

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Another first time viewing. I purchased this one a couple of years back and just haven't made time for it until now. My 9yo granddaughter looks upon it with lust as it's a horror Christmas movie rated PG-13 and thinks she can watch it (I'd say "yes" after my viewing). Beware saying you don't believe in Christmas any more because the Krampus and his posse will arrive to set things right... kind of... but not in a good way...

They almost lost me in the opening scenes when the wife's sister and her family show up. They're clones of Cousin Eddy and his brood w/dog from National Lampoon's Christmas. It improves and the visuals are quite good. The story's OK, nothing great, but a good, safe, horror film for older kids. And I felt ripped off by the ending until the camera pulls back from the "everything's OK" ending.

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Alien is one of my all time favorite SF/Horror films. I own copies of every film in the franchise, even the crossovers with the Predator series. I was a bit disappointed with Alien: Resurrection but still liked it more than any of the other films in the franchise (yes, I don't particularly like Aliens as it's a rather generic action/horror film and not that good, psychological, haunted house stuff like Alien). So... Covenant is just a bit better than Resurrection but just a smidgen better. They continue the story from Resurrection with the crew of the colonization ship Covenant diverting to the planet after repairing a failing solar array and receiving a signal which causes them to discover the planet can support life as we know it. It's several years closer than their target so they decide to take a look. And... yes, it sets up yet another sequel.

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I have a copy of this on the BR (and DVD) of The Wax Museum I discussed earlier. I enjoy the film so purchased the new, restored, BR. Allow me to wax poetic... WOW! This restored version looks absolutely spectacular! Just to be sure, I pulled out my disc of The Wax Museum and gave Mystery... a quick spin. Night and day difference! If you're a fan and have been on the fence - get off!

For all practical purposes the story is identical to The Wax Museum. There are minor differences as this one is pre-code. The alcoholic in the later film is a junkie in this one and there's a female reporter driving many of the happenings. It's just as good as the 1953 remake. I've read they used real people as the wax sculptures because the early arc lights were so hot they melted the wax sculptures they intended to use.

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I'd heard of this one but never saw it. During those years I just didn't watch new horror movies as most sounded quite lame (for the most part they still do). And... it's just not that good. Native Americans in NY "warg" into wolves to kill people involved in activities which hurt the ecology. The "first person" visuals of the wolves running through/around town may have been good at the time (OK... I don't really think so) but they're nothing more than standard key techniques used in many TV productions. And they're on display for at least 1/4 of the movie - quite boring - and don't add much, if anything, to the mystique or horror.

OK... let's switch to some old favorites to finish the day...
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In ancient Egypt, Kharis attempted to restore life to the dead Princess Ananka. He was discovered, had his tongue cut out, and was condemned to be buried alive. Sacred tana leaves are buried with him. A priest is assigned to watch him and during the cycle of the full moon give Kharis fluid from the brew of three tana leaves to keep him alive. Should anyone enter the tomb of the Princess he's to be given a fluid of nine leaves will provide movement and allow the priest to send him to take vengeance on the trespassers. Of course a pair of archiologists defile the tomb and suffer the vengeance of Kharis.

This is one of the better sequels to The Mummy. In spite of that I just don't get why, like with traditional zombies, people don't just run from Kharis and throw some combustable on him and set it alight. OK... that's the main argument with most (all?) of the mummy films. They're still quite fun with all the mumbo-jumbo about Ra and the old Egyptian Gods just adding to the overall fun time.

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Thirty years after the conclusion of The Mummy's Hand, in the fictional town of Mapleton, Massachusetts, Steve Banning recounts the story of Kharis to his family and evening guests in his home. This device uses flashbacks to tell the entirety of The Mummy's Hand (using footage from that film), eating up a good 20+ minutes of the run time. We then see another explanation from a priest of how Tana leaves work after which Kharis is relocated to MA by his new "caretaker," Mehemet Bey (Turhan Bey), to finish the failed job of 30 years earlier. More mummy mayhem ensues with a not so good ending for Kharis. Another exciting entry in the mummy mythos.

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In the 3rd, and last, sequel to The Mummy's Hand, the Southern Engineering Company is attempting to drain the local swamp but the efforts are being hampered by the superstitions of the workers, who believe the area to be haunted by the mummy and his bride. Once again we get a lesson on how to properly administer tana leaf brew. Wait! Just how did Kharis get burried in a LA swamp!?! Didn't he get burned up real good in the last film!?! AND... how did the mummy of Ananka get there too!?! Who cares? It's more fun with mummy and the locals aren't happy as Ananka gets revived and wanders about looking for Kharis, who is also looking for her. Gotta love tana leaves!

This mummy trilogy is what Hammer adapted for their take on the mummy (The Mummy -1959) and why, when I first saw that one, I thought I'd seen it all before but things were different but the same. It took several viewings of all 4 of those films before I figured out what was going on (this was pre-internet days when looking it up wasn't so easy).

Yes, it was a productive day and more like what I normally get in on a Saturday or Sunday.
 
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Pete Battista

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Title: Tales from the Hood

Year:
1995
Director: Rusty Cundieff
Writer: Rusty Cundieff (Writer), Darin Scott (Writer)
Rating: Rated R : Graphic Brutal Violence and Strong Language
Length: 97 Min.
Video: Widescreen 1.85:1
Audio: English: Dolby Digital: 2-Channel Stereo, Spanish: Dolby Digital: Mono
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish

Stars:
"Welcome to My Mortuary"Clarence Williams III as Mr. Simms
Joe Torry as Stack
De'aundre Bonds as Ball
Samuel Monroe, Jr. as Bulldog


Plot:
Welcome to a 'hood of horrors. It's a place where your worst fears have come to life. A place where it's hard to tell nightmares from reality. A place where you will discover...

TALES FROM THE HOOD.

Stack, Ball and Bulldog arrive at a local funeral parlor to retrieve a lost drug stash held by the mortician Mr. Simms, (Clearance Williams III.) But Mr. Simms has other plans for the boys. He leads them on a tour of his establishment, introducing them to his corpses. Even the dead has tales to tell, and Mr. Simms is willing to tell them all. And you'd better listen - because when you're in his 'hood, even everyday life can lead to extraordinary terror.

Extras:
Scene Access
Feature Trailers
Featurettes
Production Notes
Closed Captioned

My Thoughts:
I haven't watched this one since it first came out. I somehow remember it being better then whay it is. But it is a decent antholog horror. Just a touch of gore and effects here. I found this one to be no more then an average film.

My Rating:
Out of a Possible 5
:emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

U- 4k UHD
B - Blu Ray Viewing
D - DVD Viewing
S - Streaming

Bold/Red = Denotes first ever viewing

Rating - Out of a possible 5 :emoji_skull_crossbones:

Night of the Demon - D - : :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Nightmare Cinema - D -:emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Invisible Man - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:
Lighthouse - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Vampires vs The Bronx - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
The Lost Boys - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:
The Amityville Horror - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:

Fantasy Island - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Jeepers Creepers 2 - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:
Don't Knock Twice - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
The Dead Don't Die - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Mostly Ghostly: Have You Met My Ghoulfriend - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Damned By Dawn - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Christine - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Good Boy - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Resicent Evil: Damnation - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Hocus Pocus - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
It - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
It: Chapter 2 - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Pet Sematary (1989) - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Pet Sematary (2019) - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Pet Sematary 2 - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Walled In - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Billy the Kid vs. Dracula - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Tales from the Hood - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:

Total Watched: 25
 

Malcolm R

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I believe Tales from the Hood 3 was on SyFy last weekend. They're probably repeating it sometime this week.
 

Pete Battista

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Title: Tales From the Hood 2

Year:
2018
Director: Good Golly, The Sacrifice, Robo HellRusty Cundieff, The Medium, Date NightDarin Scott
Writer: Rusty Cundieff (Writer), Darin Scott (Writer)
Rating: Rated R : Language Throughout, Violence, Disturbing Images, and Sexual References
Length: 111 Min.
Video: Widescreen 1.78:1
Audio: English: DTS-HD Master Audio: 5.1, Spanish: DTS: 5.1, German: DTS: 5.1
Subtitles: Chinese, Dutch, English, French, Greek, Spanish

Stars:
Keith David as Portifoy Simms
Bill Martin Williams as Dumass Beach
Jay Huguley as Fitch Measpine
Alicia Davis Johnson as Pollyannas Hockenbull
Alexandria Deberry as Audrey
Jasmine Akakpo as Zoe

Plot:
Horror is back in the hood! The sequel to the ground-breaking original film TALES FROM THE HOOD reunites executive producer and Honorary Academy Award® winner‡ Spike Lee (Do the Right Thing, Malcolm X) and writers/directors/producers Rusty Cundieff (Chappelle's Show, The Wanda Sykes Show) and Darin Scott (Menace II Society, Caught Up) for an all-new gripping, horrifying and oftentimes devilishly comical anthology. Keith David stars as Mr. Simms to tell bloodcurdling stories about lust, greed, pride and politics through tales with demonic dolls, possessed psychics, vengeful vixens and historical ghosts. Mr. Simms's haunting stories will make you laugh…while you scream.

‡2015, Honorary Award.

Extras:
Scene Access
Digital Copy

My Thoughts:
This is my first time seeing this one. After watching them back to back I feel this one is a little better. Definitely has more gore. More up to date stories as well. I enjoyed Keith David in the roll of Simms. This film started out on a silly note but ended on something much more serious. Worth the time put in to watch it.

My Rating:
Out of a Possible 5
:emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

U- 4k UHD
B - Blu Ray Viewing
D - DVD Viewing
S - Streaming

Bold/Red = Denotes first ever viewing

Rating - Out of a possible 5 :emoji_skull_crossbones:

Night of the Demon - D - : :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Nightmare Cinema - D -:emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Invisible Man - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:
Lighthouse - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Vampires vs The Bronx - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
The Lost Boys - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:
The Amityville Horror - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:

Fantasy Island - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Jeepers Creepers 2 - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:
Don't Knock Twice - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
The Dead Don't Die - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Mostly Ghostly: Have You Met My Ghoulfriend - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Damned By Dawn - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Christine - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Good Boy - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Resicent Evil: Damnation - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Hocus Pocus - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
It - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
It: Chapter 2 - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Pet Sematary (1989) - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Pet Sematary (2019) - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Pet Sematary 2 - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Walled In - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Billy the Kid vs. Dracula - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Tales from the Hood - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Tales from the Hood 2 - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2

Total Watched: 26
 

dpippel

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OCTOBER 18:

18) The Wolf Man (1941) (Blu-ray Disc) 4/5 stars -
Probably my favorite Universal horror film from this era. The atmosphere that's set up here is just superb, and it ticks all the classic horror boxes for me. And even if Lon Chaney Jr. (billed as Lon Chaney) does act like Fred Flintstone throughout most of the movie, it's still a great cast.

19) It Follows* (2014) (iTunes 4K Streaming) 3.5/5 stars - I thought that this was a tense, unique little horror film despite its flaws. It has much more going for it than against it. Solid performances and great cinematography really help things along.
 
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whacky blacky

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October 19

46. Awakening The Nun (2020). FTV. Streamed. 2/5. A disgruntled nun is terrorizing a small town seeking revenge with a big kitchen knife. Nothing new here. This one is also called Bad Nun.
 
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Jeff Flugel

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14. It: Chapter Two ***

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Been wanting to catch up with this one for some time, and this challenge (and it being on Netflix) proved a good excuse to finally watch it. While I think the first part is the more effective film overall, I enjoyed this sequel quite a bit. It's more of a thrill ride than an out-and-out horror movie, I suppose, though any scene where Bill Skarsgard gets to do his thing as Pennywise with a minimum of CGI effects is creepy as hell. He does a fantastic job in the role.

The casting of the adult versions of the kid characters is spot-on for the most part, and the acting in general is very good, with Bill Hader being the stand-out. There is no doubt that the movie is overlong, particularly the final third...and yet, for those of us who have read Stephen King's epic novel, something seems lacking. There are several plot threads that are missing or truncated, some for the good (less of psycho Henry Bowers and Beverly's abusive hubby) and some for the bad (the dropping of the subplot with Bill's actress wife coming to Derry, present in the earlier TV miniseries, robs the adult version of his character of some much-needed depth). To be fair, the edition of the film I watched was the theatrical cut; perhaps the director's cut has added back in some of these missing plot elements. Overall, though, a highly entertaining carnival ride.
 
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Jeff Flugel

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View attachment 80429
I'd heard of this one but never saw it. During those years I just didn't watch new horror movies as most sounded quite lame (for the most part they still do). And... it's just not that good. Native Americans in NY "warg" into wolves to kill people involved in activities which hurt the ecology. The "first person" visuals of the wolves running through/around town may have been good at the time (OK... I don't really think so) but they're nothing more than standard key techniques used in many TV productions. And they're on display for at least 1/4 of the movie - quite boring - and don't add much, if anything, to the mystique or horror.
Good stuff, Howie! I just wanted to chime in though and correct you on one thing...the Wolfen are not Native Americans "warging" into wolf shape...they are actual hyper-intelligent wolves that have evolved alongside mankind and are known and respected by the Native American community, but otherwise unrelated to them. (This is established perhaps more clearly in Whitley Streiber's original novel).

Personally, I quite like Wolfen. I think it's a unique take on werewolf mythology, it's got a great setting (the desolated, run-down areas of early '80s NYC), and there's a real quirkiness to the characters...but I can see how others might find the lack of "proper" werewolves a disappointment.
 

BobO'Link

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Good stuff, Howie! I just wanted to chime in though and correct you on one thing...the Wolfen are not Native Americans "warging" into wolf shape...they are actual hyper-intelligent wolves that have evolved alongside mankind and are known and respected by the Native American community, but otherwise unrelated to them. (This is established perhaps more clearly in Whitley Streiber's original novel).

Personally, I quite like Wolfen. I think it's a unique take on werewolf mythology, it's got a great setting (the desolated, run-down areas of early '80s NYC), and there's a real quirkiness to the characters...but I can see how others might find the lack of "proper" werewolves a disappointment.
I never got that at all from the film and didn't go in expecting a werewolf movie. But I also went in having first read a few reviews and the review from Roger Ebert, coupled with what I saw, gave me the impression they were "warging" into the wolves:

Roger Ebert:
Wolfen "is not about werewolves but is about the possibility that Indians and wolves can exchange souls."
The very cheap looking visual effects (I was playing with that exact visual effect on a standard TV production switcher before that film came out) didn't help my opinion any. All in all it felt like a pretty standard police procedural, a genre I don't particularly care for, with some supernatural mumbo-jumbo attached.

I was more fascinated by the scenes showing the desolated, run-down areas of NYC in those years. It looked like a war zone.

I can see how people would like it. I really didn't care for it at all. I *did* give it a 5/10 in my ratings simply due to the story's potential.
 
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Neil Middlemiss

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October 19: Book of Monsters (2018) – 2 out of 5 – First Time Viewing

On the eve of her 18th birthday, Sofie and her friends throw a birthday bash. But amongst the strangers that show up uninvited is a woman with plans to resurrect five monsters using a book that Sophie’s mum read to her as a child. She succeeds and so Sofie and her friends must band together and save as many people as possible.

Movies like Book of Monsters, you know, the low-budget, fan-funded efforts rarely exceed their humble origins, but it can happen. Just not so with this one. What hampers Book of Monsters most, and it pains me to say this because it’s a British film, is the low energy and poor editing choices that chop up to a frenzy what should be exciting battle sequences and throw off balance pacing and scene punctuations. Some of the comedy lands nicely and gives you a nice chuckle, but they aren’t enough to offset the funny that doesn’t land.

Performances are also wanting, flat and largely low affect, particularly from the lead girl, Sofie (played by Lyndsey Craine). Some of the monster effects, all practical it seems, are quite good, but not inventive enough to standout. I am reminded of another low budget film that had to make the most out of precious little funds and practical effects, Dog Soldiers. That film, directed by Neil Marshall, made a genuine mark on the genre. Book of Monsters seems like it will be forgotten by the handful of people who stumble upon it as I did. A shame.

Currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
 

Malcolm R

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:emoji_jack_o_lantern: Monsterland 1/2

This was so awful I'm not even going to waste my time trying to write it up. What looks like literally an anthology of student films. Just stay away. I think I got this DVD at Big Lots for under $2 and I still feel ripped off.
 

Michael Elliott

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Direct to Video: Straight to Video Horror of the 90s (2020) ***

It seems there are at least three or four documentaries released each year that take a look at the good old days of VHS. This one here focuses in on the 1990's horror films but there are some mentions of those made the previous decade. We get interviews with Jeff Burr, Brinke Stevens, Fred Olen Ray, Lloyd Kaufman and Jim Wynorski among many others and there are some pretty good stories told here as well as a fun look at titles like SORORITY HOUSE MASSACRE 2.

Herschell Gordon Lewis: The Godfather of Gore (2010) ****

This documentary has gotten even better with age but part of this is due to the fact that Lewis and David F. Friedman are no longer with us so it makes their stories all the more entertaining and meaningful. The documentary takes a look at Lewis' entire career (the exception being three certain films released by Vinegar Syndrome) but it focuses in on the gore films. A lot of fun interviews with the cast and crew of his movies.

Jack the Ripper (1976) ** 1/2

Klaus Kinski plays Dr. Orloff, a man haunted by his mother being a prostitute so at night he stalks the streets of London killing them. This was obviously meant to be a mainstream Jess Franco and it was released around the world and even managed to make Siskel and Ebert's Dogs of the Week list. For the most part this is a decent film but the biggest problem is that there's just not too much happening. The film is well-made but just too bland at times. The highlight is a long sequence with Lina Romay that turns incredibly perverted and rather nasty.

The Hand That Feeds the Dead (1974) ***

Klaus Kinski plays a doctor who is trying to restore his wife's face after she was burned in a lab explosion. This here is an Italian-Turkish rip-off of EYES WITHOUT A FACE but I actually found it to be very entertaining. There's some sleaze thrown in as well as a couple gory operation scenes. Kinski and the entire cast offer up good performances as well.

Madhouse (1974) ***

Vincent Price's swan song to AIP has him playing a horror actor who is released from a madhouse and returning to his famous role of Dr. Death. For the most part this is a fun horror movie, although there were apparently many issues during and after the production. Price turns in an excellent performance and it was fun seeing Peter Cushing and Robert Quarry as well. The biggest problem with this film is that every death is shown as a mystery but it's so easy to figure out what's going on and why.
 

dana martin

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14. It: Chapter Two ***

View attachment 80442

Been wanting to catch up with this one for some time, and this challenge (and it being on Netlfix) proved a good excuse to finally watch it. While I think the first part is the more effective film overall, I enjoyed this sequel quite a bit. It's more of a thrill ride than an out-and-out horror movie, I suppose, though any scene where Bill Skarsgard gets to do his thing as Pennywise with a minimum of CGI effects is creepy as hell. He does a fantastic job in the role.

The casting of the adult versions of the kid characters is spot-on for the most part, and the acting in general is very good, with Bill Hader being the stand-out. There is no doubt that the movie is overlong, particularly the final third...and yet, for those of us who have read Stephen King's epic novel, something seems lacking. There are several plot threads that are missing or truncated, some for the good (less of psycho Henry Bowers and Beverly's abusive hubby) and some for the bad (the dropping of the subplot with Bill's actress wife coming to Derry, present in the earlier TV miniseries, robs the adult version of his character of some much-needed depth). To be fair, the edition of the film I watched was the theatrical cut; perhaps the director's cut has added back in some of these missing plot elements. Overall, though, a highly entertaining carnival ride.
any info on the possible 6 hour supercut of this, making this fall a little more inline with the book, and evening it out just a bit
 
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