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Mike’s Review: Hellbender (2022)

Mike’s Review: Hellbender (2022)

★★★.5 out of ★★★★★

It is oft said that being a parent is the most unique and rewarding experience one could ever have. Simultaneously it’s the most dull and common experience among us. There are highs and lows to be sure, but most of the relationships are spent having a meal, doing laundry, and trying to figure each other out. 

Hellbender spends the large majority of its hour and 26 minute run time focused on the more mundane aspects of the parent child relationship, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a wild and peculiar odyssey.

Eric’s Review: Evil Eye (2020)

Eric’s Review: Evil Eye (2020)

★★★ out of ★★★★★
Familiar family themes resonate in the Indian immigration tale of generational trust issues and the classic trope of the lover with a deep dark secret. The movie vacillates between being poignant to predictable, but it is always buoyed when veteran character actress Sarita Choudhury (Mississippi Masala) is on screen. It works much better as a family drama than a horror film, but it does have a thriller payoff at the end.

Mike’s Review: Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022)

Mike’s Review: Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022)

★★ out of ★★★★★

In 1974 we were treated to a gory nightmare that served as a haunting metaphor for the Viet Nam War. Now, 48 years later we’re being served a vile and equally nightmarish metaphor for class war and the cultural disposability of the elderly. There’s even a nice treatise on the perversion of the current real estate market in the United States.

Director David Blue Garcia even throws in a discussion of gun violence in America, the growing tension between red and blue states, and some light rumination the country’s history of racial injustice. Sound like too much? Well, it is. 

Eric’s Review: Meander (2020)

Eric’s Review: Meander (2020)

★★★ out of ★★★★★
Can a film without a plot to speak of still be compelling? In the case of Meander, a claustrophobic tricks and traps film, the answer is a qualified yes. A woman grieving the loss of her daughter is abducted and stuffed into a ductwork maze sprinkled with an escalating parade of devilish traps. That is pretty much the entirety of what you need to know, but if you take a simple idea and execute it well. it is worth watching.