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Tag Archive for ‘terror’

Mike’s Review: Bingo Hell (2021)

Mike’s Review: Bingo Hell (2021)

★★★★ out of ★★★★★

Last year brought us engaging septuagenarians battling it out the save their decrepit community center in VFW. Earlier this year saw the posthumous release of George Romero’s frightening PSA, Amusement Park. concerning the oft forgotten repugnance of elder abuse. Now, Amazon Studios is treating us to the latest in elder horror, Bingo Hell. The golden (girls) age is upon us with a new subgenera of horror, AARP horror. You heard it here first!

Mike’s Top 10 Horror Films of 2021!

Mike’s Top 10 Horror Films of 2021!

In 2020, the global pandemic gave us an interesting dynamic in film. Stripped down productions. The re-rise of independent horror. Big budget films either shelved, delayed, or cancelled all together. Last year’s horror scene definitely had a peculiar and, well, dystopian quality. 

Enter 2021! The big budget films that coldly sat on the shelves for the last year, or in some cases years, or in other cases almost a half century, are now out in the theaters for us all to enjoy. And enjoy them we did! It shouldn’t be a terrible surprise that (often) the more money, time, energy, and talent you ply to your project the better quality you’ll receive in return. Mostly. 

Here’s some of the best from another spooky year…

Mike’s Review: The Whooper Returns (2021) (Another Hole in the Head Film Festival)

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: The Last Matinee (Popcorn Frights 2021)

Mike’s Review: The Last Matinee (Popcorn Frights 2021)

★★★★ out of ★★★★★

The Last Matinee is a loving homage to film. More to the point it’s a loving homage and exploration of Argento, Fulchi, grindhouse cinema, slashers, grimy movie theaters, and quite possibly the great Lamberto Bava film Demons. Don’t be fooled though. While The Last Matinee pulls from many of the classics, it’s got its own unique style and flavor, and it’s cram-packed with EYEBALLS. 

Mike’s Portland Horror Film Festival Review: Red River Road (2020)

Mike’s Portland Horror Film Festival Review: Red River Road (2020)

★★★★ out of ★★★★★

It’s fair to say that we might not know the full impact of the global pandemic tragedy for years or even decades. Some have been tragically impacted by the pandemic, some have wandered in a face-covered fog, and others have irresponsibly stuck their heads in the sand. Everyone has had choices to make during the pandemic and those choices have manifested in the horrible, but they’ve also been used for creativity and good. 

Mike’s Nightstream Review: The Queen of Black Magic (2020)

Mike’s Nightstream Review: The Queen of Black Magic (2020)

★★★★.5 out of ★★★★★ In the latest installment of “If you’re not watching Indonesian horror movies, you’re blowing it,” brings us 2020’s The Queen of Black Magic. It’s true. Indonesia is the new incubator for the creepiest crawlies that the horror genre has to offer. Every country has had their day in the sun. The UK plastered us with Hammer and Amicus throughout the 1960s. The US reimagined the genre with slashers and super killers throughout the 1970s and 80s. And Japan brought a whole new slate of water and hair-borne frights in the late 1990s and in to the early 2000s. Now it’s Indonesia time to shine.

Mike’s Review: The Isolation Horrors (2020)

Mike’s Review: The Isolation Horrors (2020)

★★★★ out of ★★★★★ More often than not the horror story teller is beset with complex stories, radical exposition, and meandering narrative. The horror fan and the horror filmmaker so desperately want to hear and tell a compelling and multi-layered story. But as we all know too well, these stories are overtaken by this well-meaning desire and evolve in to a product so complex that they forget their intended purpose — the SCARES! The prescient and timely The Isolation Horrors is superbly aware of this exposition trap and manages to create an exquisite economy of horror story telling.

Mike’s Review: Dr. Sleep (2019)

Mike’s Review: Dr. Sleep (2019)

★★★.5 out of ★★★★★
Nearly 1,000 pages of creepy thoughts, actions, and psychic happenings were laid out between the Shining and its murderous offspring, Dr. Sleep. It seemed impossible that 1) the Shining would be made in to a film, 2) that Stephen King would be so dissatisfied in one of the true horror greats, 3) that it would deserve a remake, 4) the story would evolve in to a 500 page psychedelic mishmash, and 5) that mishmash would be made in to its own celluloid opus. Seem fantastical? Well it is.

Mike’s Review: Three from Hell (2019)

Mike’s Review: Three from Hell (2019)

★★ out of ★★★★★ At Rob Zombie’s darkened dirtbag core is a full and unfiltered embrace of the age-old adage “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Slow motion. Hyperbolic acting (or in some cases no acting). Closeups so close you can count individual pores Captain Spaulding’s grease-paint soaked forehead. Weirdly rare and off-putting selection of non-Joe Walsh James Gang tracks. If you’ve seen House of a Thousand Corpses and Devil’s Rejects then you’ve been thoroughly exposed to Mr. Zombie’s cinema trickery.