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

Michael Elliott

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And Soon the Darkness (1970) ***

Two British girls take a holiday to the French countryside where they plan to ride bikes around. They have a fight and go their separate ways and one goes missing. This is a pretty intense little thriller from Robert Fuest and has a great performance from Pamela Franklin as the girl searching for her friend. It's a VERY slow-burn type of a film but the director perfectly does it including the scene where the girl is stalked. I just loved how the director took his time having the creep slowly going after the victim. Great locations as well.

The Asphyx (1972) ** 1/2

A scientist discovers an image attached to all photographs of people taking at the moment of their death. He decides to try and experiment and find out what that extra image is and if it can be captured. The story here is great. The visuals are great. The sets and costumes are great. The performances are great. The film itself is just really drawn out because this probably would have been better as a Twilight Zone episode. I really liked the film but at the end of the day it just didn't contain something to make it more entertaining.

Next of Kin (1982) ***


After the death of her mother a woman inherits a nursing home and soon she uncovers some dark secrets. I've heard this is the Australian version of either THE SHINING or SUSPIRIA. I'll be honest, the film isn't in the same league as either of them and I'll be really honest and say I'm shocked that the movie has such a large following. It's certainly well-made, features some good performances and so on but very little happens the first house. Once things pick up during the finale it makes it worth the wait though. There's a scene involving a bathtub that ranks as one of the best twists/shocks in horror films of this era.

All the Kind Strangers (1974) ***


Stacy Keach is a big city photographer who is out in the middle of nowhere. He gives a young boy a ride home and when home he meets five other kids. Soon he learns that they don't have parents and they kidnaps out of towners to see if they will fit their family. I was really shocked at how much I enjoyed this one. You've got a great performance by Keach as well as Samantha Eggar, John Savage and Robby Benson. The story itself was quite good and led to several nice twists and turns. There's really a creepy vibe hanging all over this one. I wasn't even planning to watch this but I tried watching two other films but neither would load up and this came up as being recommended.
 

Malcolm R

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A stupidly funny movie. At the area "quick shop" (run down market on the highway with a gas pump), a couple of "hillbillies" see a group of "college kids" out on a camping vacation in the mountains who stopped for some beer. Of course the kids are somewhat terrified by the back-woods hillbillies and think Deliverance. It seems that Tucker's "vacation home" in the woods happens to be quite close to where the kids are camping. One of the girls gets in trouble when the group is swimming in a pond and Tucker and Dale rescue her only for her friends to think they abducted her and plan terrible things. The friends go off on a "rescue" mission. I've seen it a couple of times and it's still just as funny as the first.
Tucker & Dale vs. Evil is awesome! I've watched it 2 or 3 times and love it every time!

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Alligator :emoji_scream: :emoji_scream:

A young girl's baby alligator is flushed down the toilet by her exasperated father. Over the next 12 years, it lives in the Chicago sewers eating corpses of lab animals that have been used in experiments for a growth hormone, causing the animals to grow very large. Once discovered, the authorities try and kill the beast, but it eludes them and breaks out into the city for a rampage.

Another of the better homages to Jaws and also includes a few similarities to Jaws 2. We have an unusually large predator that starts attacking people. The cop who no one believes at first and ends up getting fired for stirring the pot. The herpetology expert who is skeptical at first but eventually believes and helps track the beast. The crusty old big-game hunter who is hired by the city to hunt and kill the creature (and who eventually gets killed by the beast in a manner similar to Quint). Also the ineffectual mayor who is more interested in cozying up to the local rich businessman than protecting the city. One of the victims also manages to take a picture of the beast just before being killed (like Jaws 2) and the pics are developed to prove the existence of the alligator. A small child is killed by the creature.

Similar to Jaws, a large mechanical creature was made for filming, which didn't work all the time. Though like Jaws, that may have worked in the film's favor, building suspense by keeping the creature in the shadows or just short glimpses from time to time until the finale. Acting is all over the place with leads Robert Forster and Robin Riker providing decent performances, but the supporting actors are kind of shaky which is a bit surprising as they include Oscar winner, Dean Jagger (in his last film role), and Oscar nominee, Michael Gazzo (his out-of-control eyebrows give a more memorable performance). Watched the remastered Lionsgate DVD from 2007 which actually looks very good on my projector. A blu-ray would be nice, but I'm not sure it would really add much here.
 
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Pete Battista

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Title: Final Destination 2

Year:
2003
Director: David R. Ellis
Writer: J. Mackye Gruber (Screenwriter), Eric Bress (Screenwriter), J. Mackye Gruber (Story By), Eric Bress (Story By), Jeffrey Reddick (Story By), Jeffrey Reddick (Original Characters By)
Rating: Rated R : Strong Violence/Gruesome Accidents, Language, Drug Content and Some Nudity
Length: 90 Min.
Video: Widescreen 1.85:1
Audio: English: Dolby TrueHD: 5.1, Czech: Dolby Digital: 5.1, German: Dolby Digital: 5.1, Hungarian: Dolby Digital: 5.1, Polish: Dolby Digital: 5.1, Russian: Dolby Digital: 5.1, Spanish: Dolby Digital: 5.1, Thai: Dolby Digital: 5.1, Commentary: Dolby Digital: 2-Channel Stereo
Subtitles: Arabic, Chinese, Czech, English, German, Hebrew, Hungarian, Korean, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Thai, Turkish

Stars:
Ali Larter as Clear Rivers
A. J. Cook [A.J. Cook] as Kimberly Corman
Michael Landes as Thomas Burke
David Paetkau as Evan Lewis
James Kirk as Tim Carpenter
Lynda Boyd as Nora Carpenter

Plot:
It's a matter of life and death when eight strangers narrowly escape a catastrophic freeway accident. Only a young girl's premonition saved them all from a grisly end. But now that they have put a rift in death's design, there is a price to pay – and it's going to be painful.

Packed with cutting-edge special effects, state-of-the-art gore and enough scares to send your heartbeat into overdrive, Final Destination 2 is a killer sequel to the smash-hit original.

Fasten your seatbelts and prepare yourself for one horrifying ride...it may be your last!

Extras:
Scene Access
Audio Commentary
Feature Trailers
Deleted Scenes
Featurettes
Music Videos

My Thoughts:
I haven't seen this film in years. It is a good continuation of the first one. Really liked the accident that caused it all in this one. This one has some decent kills. Liked the characters for the most part. 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

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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
Midsommar - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Hubie Halloween - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:
The Thing ('82) - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Thirteen Ghosts - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Suspiria - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
The Toolbox Murders - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Van Helsing - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Final Destination 2 - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2

Total Watched: 34
 
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Pete Battista

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Title: Silver Bullet: Collector's Edition

Year:
1985
Director: Dan Attias [Daniel Attias]
Writer: Stephen King (1947) (Original Material By), Stephen King (1947) (Screenwriter)
Rating: R
Length: 95 Min.
Video: Widescreen 2.35:1
Audio: English: DTS-HD Master Audio: Mono, Commentary: Dolby Digital: 2-Channel Stereo, Commentary: Dolby Digital: 2-Channel Stereo, English: DTS-HD Master Audio: Mono
Subtitles: English

Stars:
Gary Busey as Uncle Red
Everett McGill as Reverend Lowe
Corey Haim as Marty Coslaw
Megan Follows as Jane Coslaw
Robin Groves as Nan Coslaw
Leon Russom as Bob Coslaw

Plot:
In Stephen King's thrilling adaptation of his novelette, Cycle Of The Werewolf, a peaceful town is suddenly terrorized by a maniacal killer. The townsfolk think a madman is on the loose, but a wheelchair-bound 13-year-old (Corey Haim, The Lost Boys) knows the truth ... a werewolf is on the hunt. With the help of his Uncle Red (Gary Busey, Lethal Weapon), young Marty Coslaw sets out to stop the half-man/half-beast before he sinks his teeth into another innocent victim. Now, time is ticking ... and the full moon is about to rise.

Extras:
Scene Access
Audio Commentary
Feature Trailers
Gallery
Interviews
Reversible inner sleeve. Isolated score selections

My Thoughts:
I have loved it since I first saw it when I was just a teen. I absolutely love the supped up wheel chair... The Silver Bullet! I really enjoyed the scene when he first got it... finding out just how fast it went. I believe Stephen King's take on the werewolf legend is just right on the spot. And I liked who the werewolf turned out to be. While it is not what I would call a gory movie... there is a scene or two that shows it's fair share of blood. There was nothing about this movie that was not just plain enjoyable. It is definitely one of my favorite werewolf movies. If by chance you never seen this film it is one I highly recommend!

My Rating:
Out of a Possible 5
:emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::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:
Tales from the Hood 2 - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:1/2
Midsommar - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Hubie Halloween - S - :emoji_skull_crossbones::emoji_skull_crossbones:
The Thing ('82) - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Thirteen Ghosts - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
Suspiria - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:
The Toolbox Murders - D - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Van Helsing - U - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Final Destination 2 - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: 1/2
Silver Bullet - B - :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones: :emoji_skull_crossbones:

Total Watched: 35
 

dpippel

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OCTOBER 24:

29) Godzilla vs Gigan* (1972) (Blu-ray Disc) 2/5 stars -
From the Criterion Showa Era set, this is one of the sillier entries in the Godzilla filmography. A race of giant space cockroaches disguised as humans enlist the help of "space monsters" King Ghidorah and Gigan to help them defeat Godzilla and take over the Earth. It has all the standard tropes of this period, such as Godzilla talking to the other monsters on Monster Island and "duking it out" with King Ghidorah. Not one of my favorites.
 

John Stell

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Rating - Out of a possible 4


121) 10/25/2020 The Phantom Speaks (1945)


A hodgepodge of elements from better films (Doctor X, Supernatural, and especially Black Friday) are blended in this highly derivative thriller. Scientist asks soon to be executed murderer to participate in experiment to prove the will survives physical death. Unfortunately for the doc his subject uses the doctor's body to commit revenge murders. Fine cast but no surprises whatsoever.

122) 10/25/2020 The Vampire's Ghost (1945)
1/2

Maybe poverty row studio Republic's finest hour (technically 59 minutes). John Abbott plays sympathetic vampire sucking his way through Africa. Some interesting variations on the traditional story, and not all the victims have our sympathies. A most diverting vampire tale.
 

whacky blacky

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59. Frankenstein 1970 (1958). FTV. Watched on DVD. 2.5/5. The fifth Frankenstein flick Boris Karloff appears in has him renting out his castle to a film company to help pay the bills. They shoot their film while Boris does his creating life thing. Not bad but the series was running out of steam.
 
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BobO'Link

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Frankenstein 1970 is from the poverty row studio Allied Artists (formerly Monogram) and not a Universal production. It's not part of the Universal Horror Frankenstein series of films. It's currently owned by Warner Brothers.
 

Neil Middlemiss

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October 25: Basket Case (1982) – 3 out of 5 – First Time Viewing

A young man travels to New York City to exact revenge upon the doctors and others who illegally separated his monstrous Siamese twin from his body. Oh, and he keeps his twin brother in a small basket that he carries around with him.

Made for absolute peanuts with a tiny crew, the film is bizarre and utterly grimy. The monstrous twin, who does little but growl and kill in the movie, is a fun creation of puppetry and a couple of moments of stop-motion animation. The film really does have fun with its twisted premise and plotting and the extended flashback sequence is particularly well done. But the performances are little more than wooden line delivery and yelling and screaming, so, as long as you realize your watching a low budget, low-rent movie made by people who don’t really know what they are doing, its easier to marvel at the results.

Pretty good make-up effects help raise the quality of this film, and the seedy, soiled settings, from the trashy streets of early 80s New York, to dive bars and shoddy hotels, you really will want to take a shower when the film is over, but its easy to see why this film has a following.

In my youth, growing up in the village of Hedge End England and spending a ridiculous amount of time in the local video shop (which I think was called Video To Go), Basket Case was one of the VHS films sitting on the shelf that would freak me out to look at. I never wanted to see it, even after I really got into horror movies with 1984’s A Nightmare on Elm Street. And I never did, until tonight. In the end I don’t know that I liked this film as much as admired what it accomplished with such a random premise and miniscule money. Regardless, I’m glad I finally watched it.
 

Malcolm R

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Poltergeist (2015) :emoji_scream: 1/2

The Burke family are experiencing some difficult times, but really want a house and find one that fits their price range. Almost immediately, strange things begin to occur without explanation, culminating with the disappearance of youngest daughter, Maddie, one night while the parents are away. They discover they can communicate with her through the television and after consultation with a paranormal expert come to the conclusion she's been abducted by the spirits of the bodies buried below their house, through a portal in the girl's closet, hoping to use her burgeoning psychic abilities to free their souls.

While intended, I guess, as a remake or reboot, this film has next to nothing to do with the 1982 film other than sharing the title and a very loose framework. The characters all have different names, rather than consulting a psychic they contact a paranormal research team for help (who later call in an "occult specialist"), and only a few of the scenes from the first film are referenced here. The iconic "They're here!" line is delivered by Maddie in a limp whisper, rather than the creepy sing-song of Carol-Anne in the original. All around, this film is a complete letdown and far less effective than the original film made 33 years before. It doesn't help that many of the characters are unlikeable, so you find yourself often rooting for the spirits to remove these people from the movie.

One can only hope the announced possible re-reboot by the Russo Brothers (Marvel films) is more faithful and scary. (FX cable)
 
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Russell G

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Poltergeist (2015) :emoji_scream: 1/2
I nearly watched Poltergeist today! I may still watch it this challenge. So any of us learn anything from these reviews? :lol:

I got a whole whack in since last update. I realize I am at a point in my life that a movie with "Amityville" or "Ouija" in the title is going to have to have name brand studio backing or one hell of a review for me to watch it. After today, I am done with these series.


064 10/24 Let’s Scare Julie (2020) 2.5/5 A group of girls decide to spook the girl across the street that moved into a supposed haunted house, but a bunch don’t come back. This one is well made, and it’s a neat idea to keep it in a single location as not knowing what’s happening across the street helps build tension. The problem is that’s all it really has going for it. It’s all set up with no pay off and it left me with my interest waning.

065 10/25 Cam (2018) 3.5/5 A camgirl finds success only to have the worst kind of identity theft happen to her. This one is a pretty good thriller as the theft is literally her identity which with “deep fakes” and what not, we’re probably not all that far from happening in real life. I’m not into camgirls, so I can’t comment on how authentic the lifestyle was portrayed but all in all this one was pretty good and a novel idea.

066 10/25 Offspring (2009) 3/5 So it ends up that “The Woman” from Lucky McKee’s THE WOMAN is part of a series. This one is what would be the first film. A clan of wandering ferals sets their sites on a young family. This one is kind of a home invasion type film. It’s decent, and they go for it with some gruesome gore and a nasty edge but despite that I found it a bit slow pacing wise. Maybe it’s because I just watched THE WOMAN and liked it more? At any rate, this one is a great set-up for the character and a decent enough watch in its own right.

067 10/25 Amityville Asylum (2013) 1.5/5 I think the problem with AMITYVILLE as a film series is that you can’t trademark the town. I could shoot my bird feeder for 2 hours on my cell phone and call it “Amityville: Feeding Birds” and probably get it on a streaming service This one is about a young woman who gets a job as a janitor at an asylum built on top of the Amityville house, which was built on top of an Indian burial ground, just for good measure. After an incredibly detailed inventory of the cleaning supply closet, it became apparent that this was a no budget piece of shit. There’s maybe 10 people in it and the poor bastards are saddled with pages of exposition since there’s no budget to show anything. I think I’m going to dump watching anything Amityville related for the foreseeable future.

068 10/25 Ouija House (2018) 1.2/5 This piece of shit isn’t part of the franchise. A whole house is a ouija board! Everything about this one sucks and it’s frankly embarrassing that a low budget cash-in sequel to a series that shouldn’t be as good as it is would be this uninspired and garbage. Tara Reid is the big draw, and is in it for a minute in classic "piss on you, viewer!" exploitation gimmickry. Watch the Flanagan one and skip this.

069 10/25 The Meg (2018) 3.5/5 As is typical with any giant monster movie, scientists piss about where they shouldn’t and unleash a giant megalodon into the oceans. Thankfully Jason Statham and his juicy abs are around to save the day. None of these shark movies are ever as good as JAWS, so stop worrying about that going in. Also, giant monster movies are always going to be sort of dumb. Keeping that in mind, this one is a really good giant shark movie. They play it pretty straight which is the only way to do these kinds of films because the inherent dumbness of them falls apart when you try to be campy or joke-y about it. This one was a lot of fun.

070 10/25 Jack Frost 2: Revenge of the Mutant Snowman (2000) 2/5 The sheriff from the first film goes to the tropics for Christmas but Jack comes back anyway. The first film worked because they really leaned into the stupidity of a killer snowman movie so while it’s not a particularly good movie, it was a fucking GREAT killer snowman movie. This one they really go for jokes that never work, and a Ghoulies/Hobgoblins vibe with killer snowballs which is an incredibly low bar to trip over. So while it starts off okay, it loses steam quick and becomes a chore.
 

dpippel

Yoyodyne Propulsion Systems
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OCTOBER 25:

30) Lovecraft Country* - S1.E1 - Sundown (2020) (HBO HD Streaming) 4/5 stars -
I've been itching to watch this and waited until the entire first season was available before jumping in. Wow, what an interesting show! I'm still not quite sure what to make of it, but it is off to a VERY good start, and I can't wait to get a few more episodes under my belt.
 

John Stell

Screenwriter
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Rating - Out of a possible 4


123) 10/25/2020 The Body Snatcher (1945)


Boris Karloff gives one his finest performances as Cabman John Gray, who supplies bodies to medical school instructor Dr. MacFarlane (Henry Daniell) in 19th century Edinburgh. But there is a past between two that Gray loves to exploit, driving MacFarlane to desperate measures. My vote for the best horror films of the 1940s, with Karloff at his most evil. The clip-clop of Gray's horse becomes the equivalent of the wolfman's howl before all is said in done. Really great finale. Bela Lugosi has brief role as MacFarlane's employee.

124) 10/26/2020 The Jungle Captive (1945)


Third and final Ape Woman film is livelier than the second entry but still rather blah. Otto Kruger wants to transplant new brain into Paula's body. Rondo Hatton is his thug assistant. Kruger is more mean than mad scientist. The cliche young lovers are rather bland. Vicky Lane takes over for Acquanetta but doesn't make much of an impression.

125) 10/26/2020 Isle of the Dead (1945)


Greek war general Boris Karloff enforces a quarantine when its discovered hotel guest has the plague. But a superstitious old bat thinks there's a legendary vampire-like creature called the vorvolaka behind it all, leading to tensions amongst the group. Good Val Lewton production really hits home given what's happening in the world today.

126) 10/26/2020 A Game of Death (1945)


Another version of the famous short story isn't as good as the 1932 version but it's still solid entertainment because the source material is so strong. Demented hunter who lives on private island arranges boating accidents so he can hunt the survivors. There as some tweaks to the earlier version but this plays out as expected. John Loder is a likeable hero.
 

BobO'Link

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Howie
Another good viewing day on Sunday:

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An Amicus Films portmanteau. Something they're know for and a type of film I've never much cared for as much of the time the short stories/films just don't work that well or feel like they'd be better suited to Twilight Zone or Alfred Hitchcock Presents than on a movie screen. Amicus portmanteaus are different as most of the shorts are better than average to superior. And they should be as many of them were written by Robert Bloch. Of the four stories in this one I like the last two best. They feature a killer piano and Poe, himself, brought back to write new stories. By the time I first saw this I'd come to associate Burgess Meredith, the "host" (carnie show master actually), with Batman's Penguin so have always had trouble with him in this far more sinister role. But he's quite good. Jack Palance is feature actor in the 4th story of Poe brought back to life. That one also features Peter Cushing.

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A scientist returns to London with his bag-of-bones discovery from Papua New Guinea. While cleaning them he finds the flesh returns to the bones when exposed to water. The growth gets out of control and unleashes a malevolent being on the scientist's family and friends.

Good stuff with the monster and a different premise. But they toss in distracting sub-plots that generally go nowhere and don't advance the story. Then the end... but I like it anyway.

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The 2nd of Corman's "Poe Cycle" with a story written by Richard Matheson who greatly expanded the Poe short story on which it's based, this is a very good film. Barbara Steele joins Vincent Price for a rousing story with an iconic set piece of the slowly descending bladed pendulum.

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Dr. Phibes (Vincent Price) lives in a subterranean lair ballroom, not unlike The Phantom of the Opera with a more modernistic approach, surrounded by mechanical musicians accompanying him as he plays the organ. The good Dr. has decided to wreak vengeance on the nine doctors he thinks have murdered his wife, who's believed to have died in a car crash. His plans involve killing each in a manner invoked from the Biblical 10 plagues of Egypt of The Ten Commandments.

Considered to be a classic, I've never much cared for this one. It's well made and fun but just a bit too 60's "mod" in its approach which, for me, makes if feel quite dated.

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Another favorite. I found this at Big Lots a few years back and purchased it simply because it's a horror take on Snow White with Sigourney Weaver. I was not disappointed. This sticks closer to the original fairy tale than any other version I've seen and generates quite a lot of dread. Surprisingly, the studio had no faith in it and dumped it straight to video in the US. The new MC BR is quite good.

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Another Big Lots purchase and first time view. A guy wakes to his TV, which he'd left on, having a very odd display. He turns it off, wakes his girlfriend (with whom he's having an adulterous affair - she's married) as it's midnight and she has to at least call her hubby to explain why she's late. Hmmm... the cell phone's on the fritz, as is his land line. He convinces her they should run away together and she leaves to have some closure with hubby. She arrives home to find the world's gone crazy. People are killing each other. Hubby's even more psychotic than before. What's going on?

The overall story's told in three parts with only the first part really working well. Dark humor is added in the second, which feels like a different but connected story, and it's all tied together in the third but not in a very satisfying manner. It's OK but I'm glad it only cost $1.50...

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"What began as a birthday barbeque ended in a bizarre tragedy in Ho-Ho-Kus, New Jersey today. It was this power mower that brought a quick end to the life of 21 year old bride-to-be Elizabeth Shelley. Like wood through a mulcher, the girthful fianceé disappeared beneath the blades of the berserk mower that sent her personality raining down upon the horrified birthday revelers. In a blaze of blood, bones, and body parts, the vivacious young girl was instantly reduced to a tossed human salad -- a salad that police are still trying to gather up -- a salad that was once named Elizabeth. But death-by-lawnmower is not the end of the strange twists in this case. Of course, it's hard to be real specific at this point, but it appears that...apparently parts of her are missing."

Boyfriend, inventor, amateur bioelectric technician Jeffrey snatched some of the best parts of his mulched bride-to-be before the paramedics arrive with the intention of bring her back to life, better than ever. After all, he's been experimenting with an eyeball attached to a brain. All he needs is more parts... he creates the perfect "crack" and throws a party for a bunch of hookers who get high and begin dismembering each other. Parts galore! But will things go according to plan? Of course not! It's a Frankenstein story!

This one's even weirder and wackier than Re-animator. Also lots of fun with an ending you have to see...

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More Poe/Lovecraft inspired horror goodness with Vincent Price. The stairway to the stars has to be seen to get the full enormity of that set. It's quite amazing. And the story's good too, loosely based on H.P. Lovecraft's novel "The Case of Charles Dexter Ward." Frankly, it fits very well, looks and plot wise, in Corman's "Poe Cycle" of films but really only borrows the title from Poe. Debra Paget joins Price for the fun.

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The first of Corman's "Poe Cycle" films is an excellent entry. Vincent Price bleached his hair and skin (to look white and gaunt) and shaved for this one and Corman proved he could make "worthwhile" films outside the quickies he normally released. This one set the tone for the Poe films to follow and did it quite well. Roderick Usher and his sister Madeline are holed up in the family castle, which is falling down around them, awaiting death. Madeline's fiance arrives for a visit only to be rudely turned away and finally allowed to enter. He spends the film trying to "rescue" Madeline from her brother, but what's really going on?

The "Poe Cycle" of films are the ones that got me to fully appreciate the skills of Vincent Price. He'd done so many "goofy" type films that, as kids, many of my friends and I summarily dismissed him and any film in which he appeared. How wrong we were!

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Using mostly the title of Poe's story this one is more about a mad scientist who intends to prove humans and apes are blood kin. To that end, he abducts young women and injects them with ape blood. Unfortunately, they die after undergoing this process. Medical student Pierre Dupin discovers what Mirakle is doing too late to prevent the abduction of his girlfriend Camille and frantically attempts to get the police to help.

Universal had a fair movie here but the title's truly misleading. It's also the second "mad scientist" film on record. Lugosi's quite good as Dr. Mirakle.

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This is the first pairing of Karloff and Lugosi and shares only the title with the Poe story. In Poe's 1843 story a man murders his wife and gives himself away by accidentally bricking her cat up along with her body. The plot manages to work in twisted revenge schemes, war crimes, Satanism, human sacrifice, necrophile obsession, and the marrying of an enemy's wife *and* daughter. Lots of stuff going on here makes for a very twisted and fun ride. Just to keep the title somewhat legit a black cat saunters across the screen a few times. The pairing of Karloff and Lugosi works very well even if the film doesn't quite live up to expectations.
 
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sleroi

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512
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Gavin Kopp
10/25

27. Army of Darkness (1992) Directors cut - *****

One of my all-time favorite movies.

First theres the nostalgia aspect. I was a kid in the 70s and grew up watching Jason and the Argonauts on TV and films like the Golden Voyage of Sinbad theatrically. So an entire army of skeletons was like my childhood on steroids.

Next, being a huge movie fan in general, AOD is just so creatively filmed. From the montage of zoom-ins, placing the camera behind the spikes of the moving wall, following flying arrows, or the frantic sped up hand held take while the old witch attacks. Its like Raimi was afraid hed never make another movie again so he threw in every trick he could think of, and it worked wonderfully.

Also, there are enough one liners here for a dozen 80s action movies, and they all land perfectly.

And then those effects by KNB. Thankfully this was made right before the big CGI boom led by Jurassic Park.

For me, this movie is perfect.

28. Rifftrax: the House on Haunted Hill - ***

When the Rifftrax guys are on, they can be really funny, (see R.O.T.O.R), and when theyre just going through the motions it can be hatd to sit through. Here theyre somewhere in between. Lots of good riffs, keeping with the fun of the film while not trashing it. Unfortunately it is the colorized version. I felt the b&w version I watched earlier on TCM worked better.
 

dana martin

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Oct 28, 2003
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Dana Martin
First Time Viewing

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37. The Old Dark House:emoji_star::emoji_star:1/2


In no way, could you possibly confuse this with the James Whale classic of the same name, William Castle instead goes for the more comical aspects of the story, and less on the scare, it really doesn't feel like "The Old Dark House" it doesn't have that foreboding sense of possibly being haunted. It is what it is, times were changing and this tries to play nice without the schlock and gimmicks of his pictures before. Works good as a light comedy, but is easily outdone by any of the Corman / Price /Poe picture that had comedic scenes, or of Don Knotts Ghost and Mister Chicken three years later that got the whole haunted house mixed with comedy ... done right.

next....
 

John Stell

Screenwriter
Joined
Jun 12, 2002
Messages
1,157
Location
Columbia, MD
Real Name
John Stell
Rating - Out of a possible 4


127) 10/26/2020 House of Dracula (1945)
1/2

Dracula (John Carradine) seeks out famed doctor (Onslow Stevens) to cure his vampirism. Or is that just a pretext to reunite with a pretty nurse who got away? Lawrence Talbot (Lon Chaney, Jr.) shows up hoping the same doctor can cure his lycanthropy. Oh, and the Frankenstein monster (Glenn Strange) has somehow ended up in the tunnels beneath the medico's castle home. Fun if highly contrived (and sometimes nonsensical) monster rally. Stevens is amusing as Jekyll/Hyde type after being "contaminated" by the blood of Dracula. Skelton Knaggs is also memorable as glum troublemaker. Lionel Atwill plays his umpteenth inspector.

128) 10/26/2020 Woman Who Came Back (1945)
1/2

Young Nancy Kelly returns to her New England home, the sole survivor of a horrible bus crash. When strange, horrible things start happening in the village, Kelly and the townsfolk think she may be possessed by witch's spirit. Nicely played psychological thriller in the Val Lewton mode.

129) 10/26/2020 Strangler of the Swamp (1945)
1/2

The ghost of ferryman wrongly hanged for murder takes revenge on those responsible. But he faces a challenge in the new ferryman, Maria, who's fallen in love with one of his targets. Direct Frank Wisbar remade his own Fahrmann Maria (1935) for American audiences for PRC. The result is low budget but highly atmospheric and creepy. Future director Blake Edwards plays the man Maria loves.
 

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