Big studio productions, festival gems and a TV series- they’re all on my list of the best of the best in 2021.
Tag Archive for ‘2021 horror’
Robert’s Top 10 Horror Films of 2021
It’s that time of year again! This is what’s been stewing in the cauldron all year long. Welcome to my Top 10 for 2021.
Mike’s Review: My Cherry Pie (2021) (Another Hole in the Head Film Festival)
★★.5 out of ★★★★★
There’s no telling if 2021’s My Cherry Pie qualifies as Oz-spoitation, but it sure looks, sounds, and feels like something straight off of 42nd street. It’s not the pastoral Picnic at Hanging Rock, nor is it the ever-haunting Lake Mungo. Think Wolf Creek with little-to-no-budget, an extra bit of nastiness, and a pinch of grindhouse.
Mike’s Review: The Whooper Returns (2021) (Another Hole in the Head Film Festival)
★★★.5 out of ★★★★★
It’s always fascinating to see how something of little-to-no-value can bring out the worst in people as soon as they realize that someone else is interested in the same valueless item. This dynamic is made all the worse when it’s families fighting over the same scrap of trash. Worse yet? When that scrap of trash is the site of a 1979 horror film, the Whooper.
Mike’s Review: Halloween Kills (2021)
★★★★ out of ★★★★★
As demonic crooner Ronnie James Dio once famously opined “when you listen to fools, the mob rules.” Maybe this prescient piece of advice was being plied to the January 6 insurrection, maybe it was being plied to Halloween Kills, but just maybe Dio’s magical ways were sorting out many future truths.
The Scariest Things Review: Candyman (2021)
★★★★1/2 and ★★★★ out of ★★★★★
A powerful sequel of a beloved classic slasher movie that establishes that this franchise is perhaps the headiest and most nuanced of all the slasher movies. Director Nia DaCosta shows real visionary talent, and with co-writer Jordan Peele, adds updated depth and texture to an already fascinating urban legend.
Trailer Alert: Night of the Living Dead 2
Well, it’s sort of a trailer.
Mike’s Review: Army of the Dead (2021)
★★ out of ★★★★★
Gone are the days of Bub from Day of the Dead. Gone are the days of the zombie nurse, the fat guy, and the Hare Krishna from Dawn of the Dead. Gone are the half-dogs and headless zombies from Return of the Living Dead. Most importantly, gone is a fun but serious dissection of societal woes and man’s modern day pitfalls. IInstead we’re now being fed a pile of ghastly super-hero zombies, that shriek like space aliens, set inside a hyper-realized video game construct. It’s a sad state of affairs to be sure. One might even say that the zombie genre has jumped the shark, or in this case the albino zombie tiger.
Trailer Alert! False Positive (2021)
Oh, Hollywood and your ever-clever marketing minions. You really had us at “…contemporary take on the classic horror film Rosemary’s Baby.” That just makes our hardened horror heart go pitter-patter.
Trailer Alert! A Classic Horror Story
Giallo and Texas Chainsaw mashed up? Uh, yes, please. We’d love to see that! Well, now you can! Those horror geniuses over at Netflix have officially dropped the official trailer for 2021’s A Classic Horror Story.
Trailer Alert! Forever Purge
In light of all the insurrectionist lunacy that we faced in early 2021, it’s an incredible stroke of kismet that the horror gods would be throwing us the Forever Purge in the very same year. But they are.
Mike’s Review: Things Heard and Seen (2021)
★ out of ★★★★★ Serious question. Are horror movies required to be scary? Can they just pass off a sense of dread and doom in other less frightening but equally provocative ways? Answer: it sure makes horror more horrifying if there’s some actual horror in the horror film.
Trailer Alert! The Conjuring III
Holy Beelzebub! The official/official trailer for The Conjuring III, AKA The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do it, is finally here! Complete with devils, god, witches, the Warrens, and waterbeds — which were a thing in 1981, trust us — this trailer has it all.
Mike’s Review: Offseason (2021) (SXSW Festival)
★★.5 out of ★★★★★ Pulling the perfect Lovecraftian film is a feat like no other. It’s been tried again and again. You might even say film makers repeated attempts to crawl inside Mr. Lovecraft’s tortured brain is rife with peril, failure, and madness. Or more to the point, it’s a cursed mission. Many have attempted to bring Lovecraft to the silver screen and most have failed. In the case, of 2021’s Offseason, it’s not so much a failure, but a dull attempt.
Mike’s Review: The Feast (2021) (SXSW Festival)
★★★★.5 out of ★★★★★ Don’t. Turn. This. Movie. Off. Seriously, it’s a slow burn in grand tradition of slow burn horror films, but the payoff off is so deliciously evil and filling. If you stop after the aspic and the salad course you’ll miss a rather grisly desert.
Mike’s Review: Broadcast Signal Intrusion (2021) (SXSW Festival)
★★★★ out of ★★★★★ Right around the corner from Horror Street, just next to Parallax View Way, and right near Marathon Man Drive, is a fascinating analog look at the lengths obsessives will go to in feeding their obsessions.
Mike’s Review: Woodlands Dark Days Bewitched A History of Folk Horror (2021) (SXSW Festival)
★★★★ out of ★★★★★ Make no mistake, Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror is not a generalist survey course and this is not a casual hike in the woods. This is a full on PHD thrill ride in to one of the most mercurial of all horror genres, folk horror.
Mike’s Review: Shook (2021)
★★ out of ★★★★★ The tried and true tattered family dynamic. Kids love their Mom. Dad’s nowhere to be found. Sisters vigorously fight for their Mom’s love. Resentments emerge. The sister’s commitments to the family quickly fall to the insidious and ever-present need to feed the social media beast. We’ve all heard this tale before. Or have we?
Mike’s Review: Grizzly II (2021)
★★ out of ★★★★★ It’s everything you’ve ever wanted! It contains film footage likely derived from 10 different film shoots over the course of nearly 40 years. It’s got Nurse Ratched from One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest (Louise Fletcher). It’s got Indiana Jones pal Salah (John Rhys-Davies). It’s got the super crooked hillbilly cop from Rambo, Galt (Jack Starrett). It’s sort of got a couple scenes with a grizzly bear. But just don’t be fooled, there’s not a whole heck of a lot of Charlie Sheen, Laura Dern, and George Clooney.
Trailer Alert! Death Rider in the House of Vampires (2021)
Oh sure, who doesn’t love to revel in the lunacy that is Evil Elvis AKA Glenn Danzig AKA the linchpin to the greatest horror punk band of all time, the Misfits. His comics, his music, and his enigmatic approach to life are so fascinating, and easily parodied and barbed, but it’s his film outings that are quite simply …indescribable.
Trailer Alert! Grizzly II
If you know anything about the Scariest Things Podcast it’s that we love MONSTERS. Monsters of all kinds. Creatures beneath the sea, behemoths that lurk in the dark, and even the occasional URSUS HORRIBLUS! The grizzly bear.