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HORROR

Happy Death Day (2017)

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Happy Death Day

A Happy Death Dayteenage girl, trying to enjoy her birthday, soon realizes that this is her final one. That is, if she can figure out who her killer is. She must relive that day, over and over again, dying in a different way each time. Can she solve her own murder?

Genre : Horror
Country : USA

Cast :
Jessica Roth : Tree
Israel Broussard : Carter
Ruby Modine : Lori

Director :
Christopher Landon

My opinion on “Happy death day”

“I’m totally having deja vu right now.
Oh, I have it all the time.
It’s supposed to mean like someone’s thinking about you while they’re masturbating.
I have it at least five times a day.”

You can’t really say “Happy death day” is original. You’ll immediately think of films as “Groundhog day” and recently “Before I fall” when watching this time loop/slasher movie. The same principle with one crucial difference. The person trapped in an apparently infinite time loop is being murdered each time by an unknown person wearing an idiotic mask. Are you expecting a humorous “Friday the 13th” flick? You’ll be pretty disappointed at the end of the film. It’s never as exciting as the infamous slasherfilms from the 80’s. And you can’t call it funny either. Besides the clumsy attempt at the end when a link is made with Bill Murray and the mother of all “time loop” films. Unfortunately my final conclusion was already made. I’m still wondering what the fuzz was all about.

Happy Death Day

It’s kind of my life. The same daily routine over and over again.

Happy death day” was kind of a success in the US. Probably because of the release date (on Friday the 13th) and the overall design. A university campus with Tree (Jessica Rothe) as the central figure, who wakes up every morning in the room of Carter (Israel Broussard) after she got brutally killed the night before. I’m assuming she’s sort of a “Miss Popularity” based on her arrogant attitude. Time and again she experiences the same daily routine. First awaking bewildered. Then returning to the dorm in a daze. Absently attending class. Paying a surprise visit to the attractive teacher (you never guess why). Going to a party that same evening. And subsequently, to round of the day, she’s being successfully murdered. A simple storyline which is easy to follow and gradually turns into a kind of whodunit story.

Happy Death Day

Horror for teenies.

So, this movie is suitable for pubescent teenage girls who are balancing between childish teen films and the more serious stuff. “Happy death day” provides a short-lived relaxation without too many creepy elements, so that members of this age group aren’t overwhelmed by outright fear. On the other hand, there’s a bit of that sugary and airy mood, teen girls can identify themselves with. Tree is such a girl figure others might look up to and who they would love to have as best friend. A fairly snobbish type with also a rebellious side. Her walking around naked is a shining example of that. And last but not least, one can safely eat a maxi-pack of popcorn or a full load of nachos during this film, because you won’t see really nauseating or bloody scenes. Pros enough to lure a complete teen audience into the cinema.

Happy Death Day

Just a mediocre Halloween-night movie.

The funniest (and most predictable) part of this film is of course the moment when the victim can predict future incidents as a true Nostradamus. The one who’s witnessing this, stares at it in slack-Jawed amazement. The makers succeeded in giving it an original twist. After every rebirth, Tree suffers more and more from sustained injuries. But apart from that, this is just a mediocre film. A kind of a Columbus case which needs to be solved after several time loops. It was not easy to point out the ultimate perpetrator. To be honest, I thought that was rather far-fetched. Really a film to watch with a few friends on a Halloween night. No more, no less.

My rating 5/10
Links : IMDB

HORROR

Haunt: Has All The Pedigree To Be Something Special

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Genre : Horror
Rating : Unrated
Director: Scott Beck and Bryan Woods
Cast:
Katie Stevens
Will Brittain
Damian Maffei

 

 

 

For a lot of people Halloween is their favorite time of the year. A time to celebrate the macabre and let loose one night a year. Not for Harper though. After dumping her abusive boyfriend Sam, she is convinced to go out by her roommate Bailey. Meeting up with her friends Angela and Mallory for a girl’s night they are introduced Evan and Nathan. Bored with the Halloween bar scene they find a mysterious extreme haunted house in the middle of nowhere.

Forced to sign liability waivers they enter what seems like an ordinary haunted house. What starts out as a tame night attraction soon turns deadlier the deeper, they go. Confronted by their deepest fears they have to find a way to escape before nights end.

Written and directed by Scott Beck and Bryan Woods, the writers of A Quiet Place, go a very different route from their first big screen blockbuster. Executive produced by Eli Roth (director of Cabin Fever and Hostel), Haunt takes a much more familiar path. Unlike their critically acclaimed breakout Beck and Woods tend to follow a more tried-and-true formula when constructing their own haunted house. Whether it’s the supposedly comedic (more grating than not) best friend or our frightened love interest dropping the key after a jump scare seemingly no cliché is safe. It’s particularly bad when movies such as Hell House LLC and the first Houses October Built pulled them off better.

You can see the duo’s creativity much more in the Haunt’s killers. Covered head to toe their masks hide a much more jarring reality. With their bodies heavily modified their faces taking on the horrifying properties of whatever mask they were wearing. Just as terrifying is how brutal they come off. Taking a page from the torture porn of the 2000’s they come off as the most brutal movie slashers in quite some time. Mixing Saw-esque traps and rusty tools Beck and Woods gives our antagonists the kind of gritty edge not typically seen in modern slasher movies.

 

 

Just as uncommon is our lead Harper. Portrayed by Katie Stevens (star of The Bold Type) she is seemingly the only character given any dimension. Struggling with a history of abuse Harper is forced to deal with her tragic childhood the deeper into the haunt she goes. As shocking as it is to see in a B-movie it’s handled surprisingly well. Treated with the seriousness such a sensitive subject deserves I never felt like it became exploited or treated disrespectfully. I just wish it played more into the movie overall.

Haunt has all the pedigree to be something special. With the writers of one of the most unique horror movies of 2018 at the helm we could have seen a whole new take on the extreme haunted house subgenre. Unfortunately, that’s not what we get. Although we do see some of that innovation in our realistic lead and some truly terrifying villains Haunt quickly devolves into a more traditional slasher. But one-dimensional characters and typical thrills keep Haunt from becoming the next Halloween classic.

Rating 5/10
Links : IMDB

Haunt is Theaters, On Demand and Digital now.

 

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HORROR

Rock, Paper, Scissors: A Ridiculous, Clichéd Story

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I just wanna look and fiddle a little bit.
Fiddle and touch.

Every year there’s such a film of which you say “Man, this is probably the worst film I’ve seen this year!“. For me, it’s the movie “Rock, Paper, Scissors” that takes all the glory. With Tom Holland as director (who nevertheless brought some great films such as “Fright Night” and “Child’s Play“) and screenwriter Victor “Friday the 13th” Miller on board, you expect a horror of a considerable level. Take some good advice from me. Don’t start watching it with too high expectations, because you’ll be disappointed. Not only is the story fairly unoriginal. The acting generally sucks. And it’s never really exciting or scary. Even the slasher elements are extremely boring.

 

Rock, Paper, Scissors

 

A wimp of a serial killer.

But the most important thing is the part of the serial killer. Think of Hannibal Lecter in “The Silence of the Lambs” or Patrick Bateman in “American Psycho“. These guys were real serial killers who made an impression. From the beginning, you had that feeling that these crazy persons were sadistic, morbid individuals. Peter “The Doll Maker” Harris (Luke Macfarlane) shows bouts of madness and pure evilness. But in general, he just looks like a pathetic person who reminded me more of “Pee-Wee Herman”. It was only during the scarce moments while he relived his traumatic childhood, which he spent with Uncle Charles (John Dugan), that Macfarlane acted convincingly. The fear and torment that took hold of him while remembering the abuse, was shown in a masterful way. But for the rest, it was just a sad performance.

 

Rock, Paper, Scissors

 

Some more annoying characters.

The most annoying characters, however, were reserved for Michael Madsen and Jennifer Titus. What’s an actor like Madsen doing in this pulp film anyway? It was a mystery to me. Seeing him at work in Tarantino’s films “The Hateful Eight“, “Reservoir Dogs” and “Kill Bill“, assumes that this actor will get better offers. With a face that has character and that raw voice. As Detective Dechert he seemed to play on autopilot. The character Ashley, played by Jennifer Titus, is even less credible. Her motive is understandable but the way she approaches it is so amateurish and clumsy. Anyway, when I saw her awkward and stiff Karate movements at the denouement, I wondered how the hell she got that black belt. Sadly enough, the rest of the cast was also of a low level.

 

Rock, Paper, Scissors

 

You’re nuts to free that nut?

But the most annoying thing was the predictable story. First, the release of Peter Harris. Who the hell releases a serial killer after a few years? An insane person who killed 13 teenage girls and blames an imaginary twin brother. So, after a few years of shock therapy and meaningful conversations with psychologist Dr. Bauer (Tatum O’Neal), the latter comes to the conclusion that Peter is freed from his inner demons and is ready to function as a normal person in society. Someone like Dr. Bauer would be taken away in a straitjacket immediately nowadays. A few hours in the parental home and a glance at the cheery buttocks of a cheerleader (who, in all innocence, bends over, in such a way that he could admire her minuscule panty with fringes) is enough for our cured and reformed maniac to run back into his basement to restart his ceased activities. Complete nuts.

 

Rock, Paper, Scissors

 

Plain dreadful.

All in all, a dreadful movie. Annoying acting. A ridiculous, clichéd story. And even the gory and bloody parts made no impression. You have to be a huge fan of Tom Holland to see this as a successful horror. I hope there won’t be a sequel somewhere in the near future. Because I’m certain it’ll be more of the same. Perhaps Tic-Tac-Toe will be used as the morbid game. May the God of feature films spare me!

 

My rating 2/10
Links: IMDB

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Doctor Sleep | Final Trailer Returns To Overlook Hotel – HD

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Genre:

Horror

Release Date:

 November 8, 2019

Director:

 Mike Flanagan

Cast:

Ewan McGregor, Rebecca Ferguson, Carel Struycken, Emily Alyn Lind, Alexandra Essoe

Plot Summary:

Struggling with alcoholism, Danny Torrance remains traumatized by the sinister events that occurred at the Overlook Hotel when he was a child. He soon finds a new purpose when he forms a psychic connection with a girl who shares his shining ability.

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