Archive for November, 2009

Dog Soldiers (2002)

Posted in Horror Review with tags , , , , , , , , on November 3, 2009 by Pass the Popcorn!

dog_soldiers_04

Director: Neil Marshall

Writer: Neil Marshall

Tagline: Six soldiers. Full moon. No chance.

Plot: A routine military exercise turns into a nightmare in the Scotland wilderness.

Cast: Sean Pertwee – Sgt. Harry G. Wells

Kevin McKidd – Pvt Cooper

Emma Cleasby – Megan

Liam Cunningham – Capt. Ryan

Thomas Lockyer – Cpl. Bruce Campbell

Review (spoilers):

In the beginning of this movie we have 2 campers who are being killed just before sex(famous cliche anyone?) but the scene was done fine. It gets us perfectly in the movie’s mood and we see we are in for a bloody and gory ride, fine with me. After that we have a special unit training mission in which we are introduced to Pvt. Cooper and Capt.Ryan and we see there is a rivalry between them. I must admit I laughed my ass off during that scene. It went something like this:

Capt. Ryan: – Congratulations Cooper, you were the best, blahblahblah, now kill this dog!- and points at the nearby barking dog.

Pvt. Cooper’s expression and everything is like wtf?!

Yes, it is completely random and I’d say funny.

Back to the plot: After 4 months (after being expelled from the special ops) Pvt. Cooper has come back to the same place (some woods) with his new military crew on a training mission. They soon fine badly injured Capt. Ryan and learn that his men had been slaughtered. Suddenly they are being attacked by some creatures and in their attempt to escape they cross paths with Megan, a biologist who know what attacked them – Werewolves! They drive into some house where they have to survive the whole night.

Where was Neil Marshall my whole life?! I find his horror movies to be masterpieces! Too bad he only has 2 of them, hope he will do some again soon (fingers crossed). Anyways the movie is brilliant, not as scary as The Descent but it does have it’s brutally funny parts.  Everyone who watched will remember the “Sausages” scene and the dog biting Sgt. Wells scene. I found them to be hilarious.

Actors fit their roles just perfectly. You can picture them as everyday regular guys who just haven’t been so lucky so they missed the ball game and have to fight a bunch of werewolves now. The dialogs are also very nice, there is no fancy, Hollywood speech but pure British slang. I think those elements make it realistic enough for everyone to enjoy.

There is blood everywhere, as I can remember there were some really nice kills and situations out there worth mentioning. I liked how Spooni died, his fight scene also made me smile. He was fist punching a 6 feet werewolf!

The movie is really good! The only things I didn’t liked about it are some parts of the plot which didn’t actually “get”. I should watch it at least one more time to fully understand everything. Ryan wanted those soldiers come on a training mission here so they can be a bait for the werewolves but Megan was a werewolf from the beginning so she screwed them over or whatever? Blah. Anyway, that really doesn’t matter. Ignore all that and just enjoy watching Dog Soldiers, it’s worth it.

I also liked how were the werewolves done. The effects were good, they were pretty realistic but not really scary but that also doesn’t matter very much.

My rating:… 9/10 Like werewolves? Sick of stupid cliche and fancy dialogs and just want something different? Watch Dog Soldiers.

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The Descent (2005)

Posted in Horror Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 1, 2009 by Pass the Popcorn!

the-descentDirector: Neil Marshall

Writer: Neil Marshall

Tagline: Scream your last breath.

Plot: A caving expedition goes horribly wrong, as the explorers become trapped and ultimately pursued by a strange breed of predators.

Cast: Shauna MacDonald – Sarah

Natalie Mendoza – Juno

Alex Reid – Beth

Saskia Mulder – Rebecca

MyAnna Buring – Sam

Review (spoilers):

The movie starts off with a car crash where the main character Sarah loses her husband and daughter. Early through the movie we see that it will be  gory. The car crash scene is followed by a freaky and strange hospital scene, beats me if I know what happened to those lights there and why they were suddenly turning off, was that some kind of dream/illusion or whatever? No matter, it didn’t kill the mood that was slowly building. A year after the tragic Sarah. accompanied by her 5 friends. goes to an expedition where they go caving. In those caves they got lost and some bat people of some sort(or should we call them batmans?) attack them. They all die in the end except Sarah and that sums the whole plot I’d say.

The background story for watching this movie starts like this: I wanted a good movie to watch with my girlfriend on Halloween (btw this review is dedicated to her – I love you very much : )  ) and I asked on one forum for some  recommendations.  One random guy said to me that The Descent was the best choice and he was right! Through all the movie my girlfriend and I were scared as shit, we were shivering all the time and paniced.

There is just something naturally scary about claustrophobic, dark places and when they are filled with strange creatures it gets even more horrifying.  The camera angles were masterful and creepy, I found myself simply amazed by them.  I also liked the light:  flares, torches or camera through night vision, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that they were filling the rooms with creepy neon green & red lights. In that kind of atmosphere you don’t want to meet some shrieking creatures.

Something about creatures now : you can hear their shrieks and even see their silhouettes through the whole movie (even before they are officially seen), that just builds up the tense and it is very creepy. They crawl around somewhere all the time. Effects on them were done very nicely. You actually can believe something like that could happen to humanoid beings. It is just disturbing.

The fight scenes were also done awesome. They are nice and bloody (as fight scenes are supposed to be :]) but despite all that dark you can actually see what’s going on. I also have to comment the scene where that girl breaks her leg. I could literally feel her pain, it was amazingly done.

The only bad thing that I found about the movie was the stupid ending. It’s so senseless and let’s say worthless. So she escapes but after few minutes we realize that was only a dream and she is still stuck in those caves and and and..and…..THAT ‘ S IT. What now??!?!? I mean, I sat through the whole movie just for you to ruin it with this ending?  Urgh! There is a sequel to this movie and I heard it’s a good one. Generally I don’t watch sequels but I think I’ll make an exception. Have to wash the taste of the stupid ending of my mouth.

Btw I watched Neil Marshall’s other horror movie : Dog Soldiers and it is fantastic, I’ll write a review about it some other day for sure. Where has this director been through all my life :]

My rating: 9/10… It would have been higher only if the ending wasn’t so..I don’t know…

Halloween(1978)

Posted in Horror Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 1, 2009 by Pass the Popcorn!

halloween Director: John Carpenter

Writer: John Carpenter(screenplay)

Debra Hill(screenplay)

Tagline: The trick was to stay alive.

Plot: A psychotic murderer institutionalized since childhood escapes on a mindless rampage while his doctor chases him through the streets.

Cast: Donald Pleasence – Dr. Sam Loomis

Jamie Lee Curtis – Laurie Strode

Nancy Kyes – Annie Brackett

P.J. Soles – Lynda van der Klok

Charles Chypers  – Sheriff Leigh Brackett

Review (spoilers):

Yesterday was Halloween so I’m going to review the movie Halloween from 1978.  How cool from me, eh? Anyways this movie starts off with little Michael killing his older sisters, we don’t know why and actually we don’t care about her. The whole scene was made through Michael ‘s eyes so I found it to be very nice and creepy.  After the murder occurs he is sent to some hospital and after 15 years of treatment he escapes somehow and goes to his hometown to kill his younger sisters, his doctor chases him all the way. After that we have few dead kids, the final fight scene in which we learn that Michael is somehow undefeatable and he just escapes.

This movie is pure win.  It is directed by John Carpenter (probably my favourite director) and he had chose some of his most  trustworthy actors and actresses (Donald Pleasence & Jamie Lee Curtis) followed by a great soundtrack.  So what makes this movie so great and different from other legendary killer movies? It doesn’t rely so much on gore and blood but on psychotic terror.  The stalking in the movie was done awesome.  Michael follows around his victims all the time and even appears behind them few times but he doesn’t kill them instantly. In case of that girl ( I forgot her name ) which was stuck in that backyard building (or whatever was that), he could have killed her like 5-6 times but he didn’t and that’s what it makes a good atmosphere and suspense. Later she is killed in the “safety” of her car, I must admit I didn’t see that one coming. In all other slasher horror movies you exactly know when the kills will occur, you predict them, in this one, you don’t.

Let’s go back to Michael himself: he is scary as hell. His white mask gives me the creeps and you never know where to expect him, he just pops out few times and I’m not going to comment the scene where he is having a sheet over his head; that one was just sick. Second thing I like about him is his silence. Through almost the whole movie (expect in one part where he’s real face is shown) is not making any sounds, that was also creepy. He is perfect for being a serial killer.

I also liked the reality factor in the movie. I mean, Carpenter didn’t want to waste our time with stupid explanations and “spooky” discovers about his lunacy and invincibility (in sequels I think we got them). Michael is just a friendly neighbourhood child who suddenly went crazy, who needs more explanations? Explanations like that just kill the movie and the atmosphere, without them you may even think something like that could happen in your hometown. Why not?

What this movie makes a good movie is it’s spirit. It’s not all mindless killings and overused gore, it has a meaning of some sort, it has it’s suspense and atmosphere, that’s why it is so perfect. I recommend it to everyone.

My Rating: 10/10… Carpenter made this movie. If you need more reasons read the review once more : ]