Friday, November 16, 2012

Juan of the Dead

Directed by: Alejandro Brugues

Release Date: 2012 (limited)

As a Spanish speaker, I feel I should review this movie in Spanish but I won't. My Spanish skills aren't that great. Since I didn't pay much attention to the subtitles while watching the moving picture, I was able to appreciate the movie more.

Friday, November 9, 2012

The Bay

Directed by: Barry Levinson

Release Date: 2012

This movie will instill fear into those who swim in lakes the way Jaws did for people swimming in the ocean. A phenomenal horror picture that explores nature's creatures, this movie provided so many thrills I was afraid to drink water or eat fish afterwards.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter

Directed by: joseph zito

Release date: 1984

Keeping up with the latest installment in this series, I hadn’t laughed that much watching a horror picture since Freddy vs. Jason. I am positive that by the time this installment was released, the creators were surely making fun of themselves.

There are so many awesome moments in this movie I don’t know where to start. I’ll start at the beginning.

Friday, November 2, 2012

The Vampire Diaries - Season 4, "The Five"

Directed by: Joshua Butler
Airdate: November 1, 2012

Thursday night's episode had me on the fence, but more on that later.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween Rituals

Each Halloween, there are certain rituals I must do or it's just not Halloween for me.

Friday, October 26, 2012

The Vampire Diares - Season 4, "The Rager"

Directed by: Lance Anderson
Airdate: October 25, 2012

Last night's episode was a doozy...or was it?

As per usual, Elena's transition into vampire is the focal point of this episode. But with that we have so many redundancies (as if we don't know what's happening on the show already) that it's getting out of hand.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Sinister

Directed by: Scott Derrickson

Release Date: 2012

The last picture Derrickson directed was The Day The Earth Stood Still in 2008, which was awful. However, prior to that picture, he directed The Exorcism of Emily Rose which was quite the unconventional exorcism flick but worked well. Sinister had all the right elements working for it: the atmosphere, the story, the acting, the town. A well done thriller/horror picture from beginning to end.

Vampire Diaries - Season 4, "Memorial"


Directed by: Rob Hardy
Airdate: October 18, 2012

Recap: This week's episode is mostly focused on Elena's transformation as a vampire. Stefan, the devoted boyfriend that he is, introduces Elena into drinking animal blood. Damon, however, thinks Elena should be drinking human blood. As he so bluntly puts it, "Vampires eat people. It's part of the natural food pyramid." Alas, he's ignored and Elena is having issues keeping the blood down. Then Connor, a vampire hunter, arrives in town to "cleanup." Additionally, April Young, the daughter of Pastor Young who killed himself and the other council members in the last episode comes back from boarding school.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The American Scream

Directed by: Michael Paul Stephensen

Release Date: 2012 (limited)

Recently, I attended the DocFest taking place at the Roxie Theater in San Francisco for a screening of The American Scream.

Perfect for the Halloween season, the theater was decked out with fake spiderwebs, red and green lighting, their candy display was lit up, and even the restrooms had plastic insects all around. For the theme of the movie, the setting was perfect.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Innkeepers

Directed by: Ti West

Release Date: 2011/2

Having been a fan of West's work since House of the Devil, The Innkeepers release was exciting. However, the anticipation of the film was better than the film itself. The ultimate result of the final product was soporific, ridiculously slow, with no payoff at the end. What the frak happened, Ti West?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Top Ten Favorite Horror Stories



my Three year anniversary!
In lieu of my blog-versary, in no particular order, I'll be naming of my favorite horror related books.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Satan's Little Helper

Directed by: Joe Lieberman

Release Date: 2004

What a movie! I watched this when it premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2004. This film blew my socks off.

The quality of the film isn't particularly great but for a low budget feature which was screened at the Tribeca Film Festival, then there must have been something great about it.


Friday, October 12, 2012

Vampire Diaries - Season 4, "Growing Pains"


Directed by: Chris Grismer
Airdate: October 11, 2012

Last night, with much glee and anticipation, I watched the season premiere of The Vampire Diaries. I must say that the past seasons make this season premiere pale in comparison. Perhaps because I devoured seasons one through three in such a short period of time (took me close to two months, maybe less) that all the show's deliciousness wasn't lost on me.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Magic

Directed by: Richard Attenborough

Release Date: 1978

“Abracadabra, I sit on his knee. Presto, change-o, and now he's me! Hocus Pocus, we take her to bed. Magic is fun...we're dead.” A very fitting tagline and succinct summary of Magic, this movie was entertaining, disturbing, and sad simultaneously.

Magic, a story about a man so far gone he doesn’t realize it, illustrates Anthony Hopkins acting chops so early in his career. Most movies in the seventies had this raw and visceral appeal that shocked and appalled audiences worldwide.  This movie was no different.  Sure not as intense as any of Wes Craven’s earlier works (think The Last House on the Left and The Hills Have Eyes) but still right in the same category.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Devil

Directed by: John Erick Dowdle

Release Date: 2010

Having sworn off anything remotely written or directed by M. Night Shyamalan, I was going to stay far away from this picture. However, curiosity for the worst pictures with semi-interesting premises always lures me in.

There I was, watching Devil on HBOGo (so good!) because I had to watch this train wreck of a movie.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

The Nightmare Before Christmas

Directed by: Henry Selick

Release Date: 1993

I was eleven years old when I had the pleasure of watching this on the big screen. Sixth grade had started for me and I was on the verge of entering my pre-teen years. Little did I know how much I would grow to enjoy this amazing delectable animation treasure spawned from the mind of none other than Tim Burton. I grew to follow Tim Burton's work but now, not so much (that's another post). Anyway, below, I'll provide the many highlights of this family horroresque picture that will forever have a place in my heart.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

We Need to Talk About Kevin

Directed by: Lynne Ramsay

Release Date: 2011

After all the buzz regarding this movie died down, I took the plunge and watched this movie. A disturbing film on all accounts. This is not a film for the squeamish and doesn't need multiple viewings. All actors did a phenomenal job with their parts, especially the performers portraying Kevin.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Killer Joe

Directed by: William Friedkin

Release Date: 2012

Another doozy from the mind that brought us Bug and the Pulitzer winning play August Osage County (in production to be turned into a film), Tracy Letts provides a cringe worthy ride into the human experience.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Friday the 13th (1980)

Directed by: Sean S. Cunninghman

Release Date: 1980

The first time I saw this picture, it was a DVD rental in my apartment. The lights were off. It was a Friday night. Not having watched this movie prior to volunteering at the Horror Film Festival for many years was sacrilege; viewing of the first movie in this series which has been included in the horror genre for years was a must.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Friday the 13th Part 3

Directed by: Steve Miner

Release Date: 1982

Released in yours' truly birth year and in the gimmicky 3D presentation that has become ubiquitous (almost) with some horror pictures of our current horror film climate, this film didn't try to change the franchise's formula one bit. And you know what? This formula worked for this horror fan. Although this film received the worst reviews during its theatrical run, the deaths are to be remembered in addition to the movie when Jason's mask is introduced.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Tucker and Dale Vs. Evil

Directed by: Eli Craig

Release Date: 2011 (limited)


Tyler Labine (Dale) is the best thing about this movie, hands down! His delivery, his cuteness, his shyness and oh I could gush so much but I'll stop, was utterly irresistible in this movie. Overall, I'd have to say the movie was a major fail.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Cabin In the Woods

Directed by: Joss Whedon

Release Date: 2012

On Monday, April 9, 2012, I had the opportunity to watch a free screening of this movie. After the opening title sequence was shown, I was hooked. Not only did this movie have the campiness from Evil Dead but anything and everything Joss Whedon related. And if that's not enough, well then I don't know what is!

Friday, April 6, 2012

The Vampire Diaries - Season 1


Early April, on a whim, I decided to watch the pilot of a show Netflix recommended under "TV Drama with a Strong Female Lead."

I have two friends who are completely encapsulated in this world but I couldn't be bothered. I was watching Angel, re-watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer sporadically, and everything but this.

After watching the pilot, I was completely hooked!!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Halloween III: Season of the Witch

Directed by: Tommy Lee Wallace

Release Date: 1982

"Happy, happy Halloween, Halloween, Halloween, happy, happy Halloween, Silver Shamrock!" (played to the same tune of "London Bridge is Falling Down").

The Halloween jingle to the Halloween store Silver Shamrock is played repeatedly throughout the movie. The repetition foreshadows the horror the Silver Shamrock company embodies.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Angel Season 5 - Highlights


Airdates: October 1, 2003 - May 19, 2004

I completed the last series in Buffyverse this past Sunday. At the end, I honestly didn't know what to do with myself. I'm not completely enrolled in watching the defunct Dollhouse just yet as much as I appreciate Eliza Dushku and her loveliness.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Friday the 13th: Part 2

Directed by: Steve Miner

Release Date: 1981

The first movie I'd seen directed by Steve Miner was H20:20 Years Later. The story and his direction made a solid addition to the Halloween franchise (which should have ended with his movie). This sequel, being one of his first forays into the horror genre, was awesome. 

The first ten minutes were a rehash of the final battle between Alice (Adrienne King) and Jason Voorhies mom. King's acting was awful - even for horror movie standards. Her face after she woke up ("Then he's still out there") was cringe-worthy. I don't think this was necessary because I almost stopped watching. After the title sequence scrolled, the movie became interesting.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Paranormal Activity 2

Directed by: Tod Williams

Release Date: 2010

This sequel to the successful Paranormal Activity did not create the same sense of fear and chill factor the first one established. By the time I woke up in the morning, whatever lurking jitters I once felt were gone.

Fright Night (2011)

Directed by: Chris Gillespie

Release Date: 2011

Being a fan of the original movie, I had to watch the remake written by a Buffy the Vampire Slayer series regular writer, Marti Noxon. She wrote one of my favorite episodes on Season 2 ("Surprise") so I had to support! Unfortunately, I was severely disappointed.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Let Me In

Directed by: Matt Reeves

Release Date: 2010

Finally, I watched the remake of the original Swedish film, Let the Right One In, which was released in 2008.

As a skeptic of American foreign film remakes, I started watching this incarnation with much scrutiny, making comparisons from the original. Even though I was able to enjoy this based on its own merits, there were some aspects of the movie I couldn't help but criticize.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Angel - Season 3 Overview

Airdates: September 4, 2001 - May 20, 2002

As a Whedonite, I had to give this show a chance. The first two seasons were a tad slow to get into even though there were some good episodes. But this middle season was absolutely stellar! Below I'll go through my ten favorite episodes of the season. Beware for those who have not seen these episodes - there are spoilers afoot.

The Walking Dead Graphic Novels



When I watched The Walking Dead on AMC two years ago, I was fascinated with the zombie show (because I love zombies) but more so to discover the show was based on a graphic novel by Robert Kirkman. Last year, (2011), I finally decided to pick up the graphic novel and explore a new medium I don't usually read. After I devoured Volume 1: Days Gone Bye, I was hooked.

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Woman In Black

Directed by: James Watkins

Release Date: 2012

As I write this, I'm extremely disappointed after coming back from the theater. Two things before I begin this entry.
1- This is the first movie I saw in the theater as of 2012 since December 2011 (I watch on average 12-13 movies a year in the theater so I choose them wisely. My movie ticket was $14! It's not cheap to watch movies in New York City.)
2- This is the first horror movie I've seen in the theater since last year's Scream 4, so I came into this movie with high expectations not only as a genre picture but due to the massive positive reviews from both Rotten Tomatoes (certified fresh) and Metacritic (in the green zone).

Unfortunately, this horror fanatic was unimpressed, completely un-petrified, and un-thrilled from start to finish.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

"Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered" - Buffy The Vampire Slayer


Directed by: James A. Cotner
Airdate: February 10, 1998

"I wish dating was like slaying: you know, simple: direct, stake to the heart, no muss, no fuss" - Xander in "Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered, Season 2, episode 16.

Post Valentine's Day,  I had to watch this episode because it's when Xander was dating Cordelia in secret, Angelus had appeared, Amy wasn't a rat yet, and it's the episode in which Sarah Michelle Gellar's screen time was less than usual because she was hosting on Saturday Night Live during the production of this episode so they turned her into a rat.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Feast

Directed by: John Gulager

Release Date: 2005

Campy, over the top, gory, and so many money shots (think blood on the lens), this movie started in the right spirit but went downhill along the way. As the first script penned by Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton, I thought I would enjoy this picture but sadly, I did not. The middle dragged and by the time it was over, I barely cared about the whole experience in the first place.

The plot line revolves around these cast of characters we meet in a bar and how they defeat these random beasts that come out of nowhere.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Collector

Directed by: Marcus Dunstan

Release Date: 2009

Upon the recommendation from a friend, I took this movie (high in demand, I might add) out of the library. And wow! What a movie. This movie tones down the torture porn genre started by the Saw movies and creates a new movie villian. As Marcus Dunstan's directorial debut, his background in the horror genre started on the film Feast with co-writer Patrick Melton and the recent Saw movies (IV, V, 3D: The Final Chapter). With great cinematography and storytelling, this movie is definitely a must see for horror fans.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Zombieland

Directed by: Ruben Fleischer

Release Date: 2009

With a fantastic blend of comedy and horror, this flick had me cringing and laughing at the same time.

Jesse Eisenerg (whose career I've been following since Roger Dodger) starts us off with a few rules: #1: Cardio, #2:The Double Tap, #3: Beware of the Bathroom, and so many more throughout the movie.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Battle Royale

Directed by: Kinji Fukasaku

Release Date: 2000

After watching this movie for the first time, I was supremely disturbed. I also thought the premise of this movie was vaguely familiar (think Hunger Games meets Lord of the Flies on an island...in Japanese...but much more brutal) until I watched the very end. I have yet to read Hunger Games proper but already, it's quite similar.