Sunday, 24 June 2012

God Bless America (2012)

As a huge fan of Bobcat’s last film (World’s Greatest Dad), I had very high hopes for God Bless America. Touting a message under the thin veil of an ultra-dark satire, GBA devastatingly fails to deliver on what was a clever and interesting premise. Foregoing subtlety and instead hitting it’s audience over the head, GBA is crammed full of overlong rants that would have had a greater impact if left to the end, by which it’s steam had pretty much fizzled out. They say actions are worth a thousand words, and after what feels like thousands of words, we’re left with relatively few actions. Film is the art of showing instead of telling, something Bobcat seems to have forgotten. It feels like he wrote the entire movie in an off-day and just wanted to vent. Apart from it’s excessive use of ranting, GBA also felt disjointed and unpolished as far as storytelling goes, the characters feeling second wheel to their rants. As much admiration as I have for what it tried to do, I was ultimately left disappointed. Instead of a clever, brutally dark satire, we got a film that spends far too much time ranting and spelling everything out for the audience, treating them like they’re the stupid idiot morons it reviles so much. Then again, maybe that’s the point.

5/10, disjointed storytelling and a message consumed by self righteousness and excessive ranting prevent God Bless America from being the witty satire it wanted to be (or could have been). Would recommend if you’re bored.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

The Cabin in the Woods (2012)

I expected The Cabin in the Woods to do its own spin on the tired ‘teen slasher’ genre, but I didn’t expect it to do it quite so well. Coming in to the movie expecting something on the level of Dale and Tucker vs Evil (which I very much enjoyed), what I got was a much more refined and thrilling vision. Playing on all the old horror clich├ęs we love to hate, TCITW has just the right amount of meta humour without going too over the top with it. Its clever premise keeps taking even further unexpected developments, pushing forward and giving you that much more, after most movies would have already wrapped up. But rather than it feeling overlong, you really appreciate all the extra story and going where most movie’s wouldn’t bother. If you’re an avid horror fan, the many nods to movies that defined the genre won’t go unnoticed, and are extremely welcome. TCITW easily secures a spot as one of the year’s best. It would almost be a guilty pleasure, if it wasn’t so clever too. The great admiration of horror really shines though and will be sure to please all those who feel the same way.

8.5/10, it’s smart, it’s gory, and it turns an overused formula into something incredibly unique and memorable. Something I think will go down as one of my all-time favourites, right alongside the Evil Dead franchise.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Mientras duermes (Sleep Tight) (2011)

Not something I’d wager was very popular or successful; this Spanish flick was a great piece of cinema thriller/horror that I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of. Following the story of an apartment building clerk who seeks happiness in some very dark places, the movie does an excellent job at portraying his vice without a lot of judgement, though still painting him as a very troubled and sinister character (but one we still care about), reminiscent of a much tamer American Psycho with a more average joe Bateman. Mientras Duermes lives up to its thriller genre with some incredibly intense moments, with stellar and believable performances all-round. The end of the film was icing on the cake for me, it’s protagonist as methodical and precise as the films script. It’s not a big movie and it’s very much a story driven character film, but it’s a great one at that. Most people won’t give a shit about it, but if you’re into these kinds of movies it’s well worth a watch.

7.5/10 - Mientras duermes is an intense, enjoyable and well crafted little thriller that portrays it’s creepy antihero with finesse, dealing with his troublesome hobbies from his own skewed perspective.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Project X (2012)

This movie was fucking horrifically bad. Not so much the way it was crafted, but its content. Props where props are due, it was well made, and watchable - for what it was. But the props ends there. It sports some of the most lurid and classless footage ever compiled into a feature film, and it's proud of it. I wonder at what point during the filming of this movie did any of the parties involved consider this a legitimate film venture. Featuring relentless sexism, homophobia, a contender for ‘worst script of all time’, and a general lack of cognitive thought , this is hands down one of the most morally reprehensible and just plain stupid films I’ve seen to date. And not even remotely in a good way. I’d take Salo over this any day.

2/10. It gets a two because I wasn’t bored. Though it made me wish I was. Avoid this movie, it’s trash of the lowest common denominator in every sense of the word. This is truly a feat of shittiness.

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Prometheus (2012)

Prometheus isn’t perfect, it’s also no ‘Alien’. But that said, I did enjoy it quite a lot. It’s difficult to judge it without drawing reference to Alien, and in comparison it fails to do many of the things Alien did so well. It lacks that certain attention to detail, the finely crafted characters and tight plot, as well as that claustrophobic sense of horror that makes Alien so memorable. But on its own merit it was a decent, if not exceptionally entertaining movie. While the plot wasn’t anything to rave about, Prometheus served as a good prequel to a film that didn’t need one. It answered the questions Alien left you asking, while raising further questions of it’s own. Unfortunately, questions I don’t quite care as much to finding the answer to.

7.5/10, Prometheus was an enjoyable, albeit disappointing addition (or spinoff) to the Alien franchise. It's not Ridley Scott's return to former glory, but it's a good start.

Monday, 4 June 2012

Max Payne 3 (VG, 2012)

The third instalment in the franchise, Max Payne 3 boasts the franchise’s classic gameplay, but slightly updated for modern audiences. While Max suffers from not having Remedy behind the wheel to provide their trademark charm and wit, Rockstar delivers an amazing experience that doesn’t fall far behind. It feels enough like a Max Payne game to please fans, but I’m willing to bet many will be disappointed at the straightforward and rapidly moving plot. Whatever it lacks in charm it makes up for with adrenaline filled, breathtaking scenes that keep on pushing you to go further.

8/10, Max Payne 3 is one of the best looking, and playing games to come around in a long time and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it despite having strayed from its roots.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

The Innkeepers (2011)

I really enjoyed it, it had a great combination of quirk and horror. A lot of on screen chemistry from the leads as well as likable characters leads to an emotionally invested "spook fest". Some may find it a little slow or boring but fuck those people. It was really well done and an all round likable little horror with plenty of originality mixed with the usual horror formula. At some points it becomes so light hearted and charming that you don't expect it to have such gruesome ghosty scenes.

8/10, would recommend and watch again.