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Your Guide To Horror Movies This Halloween

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The month of October. Halloween month. That means at the end of this month it’s all about this worldwide celebrated holiday. A tradition with Celtic roots where mass dressing up parties arise and the television stations look through their horror catalog so they can treat their viewers to all kinds of creepy horror flicks. Coincidentally, a Horror Challenge was organized on my favorite Dutch film website. The result is a whole series of horror movies that I’ve watched in the last three weeks. So, if you don’t know what to watch at the end of this month, let me give you an overview of what I have discovered. Obviously, there are some gems in between them. And some films you’d better avoid because they are too crappy. But you have to decide that yourself. Here we go ……

 

1. The Devil’s Rejects (2005)

This one has always been high on my wish list. I myself am not a huge fan of Rob Zombie’s work. This director has movies that tend to push new boundaries on my scale of appreciation. In short, either it’s just plain awful to watch. Or they are simply great. The fact that Rob Zombie’s wife Sheri Moon Zombie plays in most of them, is always a plus. And not because of her acting qualities. I liked this one from the trilogy (a trilogy with “House of 1000 Corpses” and “3 From Hell”). Where the first film came across as totally insane with an overwhelming load of gore and disgusting images, Zombie left out the gore a bit in this one. Not that it has become a film for the sensitive soul. It is and remains to be extremely violent and cruel. Definitely recommended for a fun Halloween evening.

7/10
IMDB

 

2. The babysitter (2017)

To be honest, I’m not really a big fan of movies that mix horror with comedy (that you’ll notice a bit further). But now and then there are some funny films in between. Similarly, this film. A gory version of “Home Alone” with the gorgeous babysitter SamaraReady or notWeaving. And to my shame, I have to admit I hadn’t noticed that the ravishing Bella Thorne was also appearing in here. Unfortunately, it’s only briefly.

6/10
IMDB

 

3. Dead Silence (2007)

I didn’t really expect much from this. I thought it would be a run-of-the-mill horror story. In the end, it managed to surprise me a bit. Creepy dolls. Unexpected denouement.

6/10
IMDB

 

4. Horror Story (2013)

Voila, and here’s the first crap film. No more Bollywood horror for me. This was as scary as “Phantom Manor” in Disneyland Paris. Not scary at all. I could live with that. But the acting was so bad it didn’t even get funny. And those conversations. So stupid and ridiculous (even though they had an endearing English accent). There are plenty of conversations as follows: We have to find the roof.
Yes!
There is a roof on every building, right?

And always the word “Guys” at the beginning of every sentence. Sigh! And also, all of them claim their privileged role as an actor. No key scene passes without clearly depicting every main character. Either in group formation (preferably in a symmetrical triangle arrangement) or systematically one after the other in profile. And all have the same expression on their face of (posed) fear and despair. No, I would avoid this like the plague.

1/10
IMDB

 

5. Leatherface (2017)

Fine movie. An entertaining origin story about “Leatherface“. “The making of” as it were. The atmosphere is very good. Brutally aggressive and with some nice gore scenes. Even though I’m not really a fan of sequels. Or prequels.

6/10
IMDB

 

6. Invasion of the Bodysnatchers (1956)

This time I also ventured into old-school horror. Well, it naturally exudes nostalgic value. I don’t think it’s a really scary horror. It’s all too soft for me. I watched it with a smile and tried to imagine how young ladies experienced this in those days long gone. Wearing a petticoat with their hair tucked up, in the arms of their date at the cinema, with their hands over their mouths because of the unbearable tension. To be honest, I’ve been looking more at the shapes of Dana Wynter’s pointy bra. The tension in this film is out of proportion to the overly emotional expressions on the actors’ faces. I understand that fans of films from that period will curse me, but I fear that I cannot be counted among the fan base of 50s films.

4/10
IMDB

 

7. Sleepy Hollow (1999)

Gothic ghost story. Something I like once and a while. And the decors and mood are simply fantastic. However, I personally don’t think it’s horror. More fantasy with a supernatural touch. “X-files” meets “Crimson Peak“. And Johnny Depp plays a great leading role again.

6/10
IMDB

 

8. Død Snø (2009)

Another Nazi zombie movie. A bit like “Attack of the Lederhosen Zombies” but with WWII actors in Norway. In short, many bloody situations and sometimes funny in a morbid way.

6/10
IMDB

 

9. Aquaslash (2019)

A High-school movie. That means the 3 B’s: Boobs, Booze & Blood.
It’s just not really a slasher in my opinion. More like a “slash”-movie as it’s limited to one single situation that causes victims. I think the makers used all the fake blood that was available. I dare not guess how many liters came down in the end. Quickly forget this monstrosity!

2/10
IMDB

 

10. The Babysitter: Killer Queen (2020)

Well, I had to watch this one out of curiosity. And another proof that sequels are usually not worth a watch. “The Babysitter” was enjoyable. But this was just plain bad. The only bright spots were the soundtrack with “The Cramps” and “Dead Kennedys“. And luckily there was a bit more of Bella Thorne here. This way it was more enjoyable to look at the screen. Besides these plus points, I wouldn’t put too much effort into this film.

2/10
IMDB

 

11. Holidays (2016)

I love an anthology movie now and then. And as always, the level fluctuates from story to story. The first 3 weren’t really so good, except “Valentine“. The low point was “Mother’s Day” maybe. Or you are looking for some female nude in a horror. But the next 5 were worth it, with the highlights “Father’s Day” (most creepy) and “Halloween” (very funny in a sadistic way). Recommended for a Halloween movie night.

6/10
IMDB

 

12. The Unborn (2020)

A short horror. Luckily, because this was really a crap movie. The run-up was actually pretty good (despite the amateurish acting) and I was hoping it could get interesting. But to be fair, it didn’t make much sense. I had no idea what it was about ultimately. Didn’t quite understand it. Think I’d better look up the 2009 movie of the same name.

1/10
IMDB

 

13. Maniac (1980)

I couldn’t sleep. And the next day I had a day off. So I thought “Let’s just watch another flick”. I can remember standing in front of this one at the video store several times in the ’80s, wondering whether I would take it with me or not. Apparently I had such a premonition because I didn’t really like it now. Admittedly, it’s a movie from the 80s and quite dated when looking at the visual. But this one is simply too boring in terms of content. The massacres are nothing extraordinary. And there are also some minor flaws in it. For example, you see some people on a subway platform waiting. The next moment they have suddenly vanished. The only positive thing was the lead actor Joe Spinell. This “Silence of the Lambs” -like serial killer looks terrifying by nature.

3/10
IMDB

 

14. The Bye Bye Man (2017)

I don’t get it that this one has a very low score on IMDb. Granted, in “Candyman” and “Slender Man” you had the same concept. But “The Bye Bye Man” was much more exciting and intense than “Slender Man”. In any case, I thought it was a superb movie. Recommended.

7/10
IMDB

 

15. Awoken (2019)

The initial idea behind the demon Iddimu isn’t so bad. The movie reminded me a bit of “The Lazarus Effect“. Mixed with a little “Nightmare on Elm Street“. Well, it’s another movie from the list titled “There-is-someone-possessed-and-an-exorcism-will-help”. Only the denouement I found rather bland. It looked like a wizard duel from a Harry Potter story.

6/10
IMDB

 

16. Sputnik (2020)

Personally, I think it’s more a typical SF and not really horror. Maybe because it’s a bit bloody, it gets that last label. It felt like an “Alien” movie. Not exactly groundbreaking. You already know that when the military gets involved in something like what happens here, they mostly have a hidden agenda. But besides that, the alien’s design and the way it is portrayed, is simply sublime. Breathtaking realistic. Go see it!

7/10
IMDB

 

17. I tre volti della paura (1963)

Another one from the old days. I keep having a hard time watching these movies. However, they do have their charm. The movie poster for instance reminds me of the time when I was 10 to 12 years old and went to the cinema. I remember there were movie posters like that. Those old-fashioned painted posters with photos from the film around them (where white stickers were placed in strategic spots). But it certainly has a high nostalgic value. I thought “Il Telefono” was more of a Hitchcockian thriller. My attention was distracted too much by Michèle Mercier’s negligee. “I Wurdalak” was such an old-fashioned vampire movie that reminded me of those old Dracula movies that I watched late at night on ZDF or ARD (German television channels). With Boris Karloff in a leading role, of course. And “La Goccia D’acqua” is a standard horror story with a really bad looking doll as a ghost phenomenon. The best of the movie was the end with Boris Karloff on a rocking horse while people from the film studio ran in front of the camera with branches. Hilarious.

5/10
IMDB

 

18. American Fright Fest (2018)

The most horribly bad horror ever seen. Seemed like the thesis of students at film school. First of all, the acting is so laughable and amateurish. They should already invent a price for that. The story is rubbish. The practical effects just look awful. Do yourself a favor and skip this one.

1/10
IMDB

 

19. Student Bodies (1981)

Jesus, what a shitty movie. This horror/comedy fails in all areas. It’s certainly not horror. And the humor isn’t that great either. Kind of a “Hot Shots!”, “Police Academy” and “Porky’s” mix. But then with the most dumb and ridiculous jokes. I don’t understand how it gets such a score on IMDb.

1/10
IMDB

 

20. Raw (2016)

A fairly bizarre but at the same time original film in which cannibalism and budding sexuality are the central themes. With an ongoing initiation ritual for fresh students as a common thread. Coincidentally also something controversial these days here in Belgium. By the way, I didn’t know that the entire film was filmed here in Belgium. Ignore reports of people passing out during a screening because of the images. I personally think that’s a bit exaggerated.

6/10
IMDB

 

21. Blood Bags (2018)

Italian horror about I-don’t-know-what. And the ending was completely incomprehensible. Laughable acting. Awful movie.

1/10
IMDB

 

22. Midnight Son (2011)

This is my kind of movie. A reinterpretation of the old vampire concept in a unique way. It’s not really terrifying. But it sure is a neat, little special flick.

7/10
IMDB

 

23. The hole in the ground (2019)

Seemed like a more modern version of “Invasion of the body snatchers“.

6/10
IMDB

 

24. She never died (2019)

Certainly not a bad movie. But compared to its predecessor “He never died”, it was a huge difference (even if there’s only one extra letter in the film title). I missed the humor as a starter. The protagonist has something lugubrious but not the appearance of a Henry Rollins. And in “He never died” it was a little bit clear what it was about and what the person Jack was. If you start watching “She never died” without knowledge of the previous film, you have no idea what it’s about The brief image of the two scars on Lacey’s shoulder blades won’t tell you much.

5/10
IMDB

 

25. Harpoon (2019)

In the beginning, I had the feeling that it was going to be another low-budget horror/comedy. But in the end I was pleasantly surprised. Not only did the footage look great, the acting was far from bad and the story was engaging enough. Fairly black humor was used. And you could cut the atmosphere with a knife at times. Boats are a very popular location for horror nowadays. This movie was definitely a lot better than “The Boat”.

6/10
IMDB

 

26. The Perished (2019)

Uh, what the hell was this. Awful acting (really, that mom was just plain awful). Ridiculous how the monster looked. It looked like an employee in a rubber suit. Nothing terrifying. And a lot of senseless blabbering. I understand it’s about the traumatic nature of an abortion. They should have turned it into a psychological drama. A gallingly low level. Let’s quickly forget about this one.

1/10
IMDB

 

27. 3 From Hell (2019)

Too bad. This was rather disappointing. While the first two films in this trilogy were still full of sadism and senseless violence, I thought this was pretty weak. I didn’t really care what would happen to the illustrious trio. And the voluptuous Mexican ladies weren’t exactly pleasing to the eye either. Regrettable.

4/10
IMDB

 

28. 0.0 Mhz (2019)

A South Korean ghost story with “Exorcist” traits. Not really creepy. No jump-scares. But there’s very good camera work to admire. I thought it was an average story based on a comic apparently. Still something positive. Yoon-young Choi is a delicious looking Korean girl. Well, you know .. a little eye candy won’t hurt …

4/10
IMDB

 

29. The Dark (2018)

What a special movie. Such a quirky take on the zombie genre. I like that. To be honest, I didn’t really think it was horror but more of a drama. The portrait of an exceptional friendship between a murdered girl and an abused, blind boy. Simply beautiful.

7/10
IMDB

 

30. The Axiom (2018)

I don’t understand how this can get a 5.6 score on IMDb. The run-up wasn’t bad. The middle part started to falter a bit. But the denouement was a huge disappointment. And some situations were really too dumb for words. No, it’s not exactly a movie that’ll stay with you. In this and two days I won’t remember anything anymore of it.

4/10
IMDB

 

31. Hubie Halloween (2020)

I had been warned. And yet I couldn’t resist. I’m not a big fan of Adam Sandler anyway. And this movie can be added to the list “Movies-In-Which-Sandler-Isn’t-Really-Funny”. Here the other actors take care of that. Hubie’s mom’s t-shirts, for example. Or that lady who carelessly comments “I’m asexual but that girl’s is making me horny”. Stupid, absurd one-liners and situations. I had to laugh a few times. But towards the end, it was just plain bad. Even the bloopers in the end weren’t really funny. So forget about this one.

3/10
IMDB

 

32. In the Mouth of Madness (1994)

And last but not least, yet another old classic. A surreal horror story (could also have been written by Stephen King) with Doctor Who-Esque creatures emerging from a parallel universe created by a writer. I thought it was entertaining enough.

6/10
IMDB

 

 

Have yourself a fun, scary HALLOWEEN everybody.

Hope the summary will help you in choosing the right Halloween Movie

 

Action

Justice League: Director’s Cut | Official [Color] Trailer – HD

by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists newfound ally Diana Prince to face an even greater threat. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to recruit a team to stand against this newly-awakened enemy. Despite the formation of an unprecedented league of heroes in Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and the Flash, it may be too late to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions.

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Genre:

Action, Adventure, Fantasy

Release Date:

2021 (HBO Max)

Director:

Zack Snyder

Cast:

Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Gal Gadot, Ray Fisher, Ezra Miller, Jason Mamoa

Plot Summary:

Fuelled by his restored faith in humanity, and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists newfound ally Diana Prince to face an even greater threat. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to recruit a team to stand against this newly-awakened enemy. Despite the formation of an unprecedented league of heroes in Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and the Flash, it may be too late to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions.

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Action

TV Spot | Zack Snyder’s: Justice League | HBO Max

Fuelled by his restored faith in humanity, and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists newfound ally Diana Prince to face an even greater threat. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to recruit a team to stand against this newly-awakened enemy. Despite the formation of an unprecedented league of heroes in Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and the Flash, it may be too late to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions.

Published

on

By

Genre:

Action, Adventure, Fantasy

Release Date:

2021 (HBO Max)

Director:

Zack Snyder

Cast:

Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Gal Gadot, Ray Fisher, Ezra Miller, Jason Mamoa

Plot Summary:

Fuelled by his restored faith in humanity, and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists newfound ally Diana Prince to face an even greater threat. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to recruit a team to stand against this newly-awakened enemy. Despite the formation of an unprecedented league of heroes in Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and the Flash, it may be too late to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions.

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Crime

The Untouchables – A Retrospective Look

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I watched this in honour of Sean Connery who sadly passed away the day before. It must be 10 years since I have watched this, and I had forgotten how brilliant it actually was.

What is often overlooked with ‘The Untouchables’ is just how emotional it is in parts, from Ness (Kevin Costner) meeting the mother of a girl blown up by a cafe bomb to the touching climax between Ness and Stone (Andy Garcia). It is a film that is genuinely upsetting to see the end, you would be quite happy to spend more time with these people.

It is also undoubtedly a film about friendship and that is where the late great Sean Connery stands out from the cast. As supposedly past it beat cop Malone, he strikes as a man of lonely isolation, just trying to get through every shift alive. He is at first suspicious of Ness but soon warms to what Ness is trying to achieve and there the bond between the two starts. Malone’s relationship with Stone gets off to a less auspicious start but by the end of the film, the relationship produces one final emotional wallop that we all deeply feel. Throw in accountant Oscar Wallace, played for the comic relief by Charles Martin Smith and we have four disparate men bonding over their end goal, to catch and see justice brought again crime lord Al Capone, (played with menace by Robert DeNiro).

There is so much to admire here, some of the setpieces are simply astonishing, the stakeout and subsequent battle on the Canadian border are sensationally choreographed, and a homage to the Odessa Steps sequence from Battleship Potemkin is nerve shreddingly executed. The violence is brutal and shocking at times and as stated previously the deaths are graphic and in one particular case deeply moving.

Kevin Costner was a star on the rise at this point, with big hits like ‘Field of Dreams,’ ‘Dances With Wolves,’  ‘JFK’ and ‘Robin Hood’ to come, he is excellent as the clean-cut family man Ness. A young Andy Garcia is impressive as the sharpshooting Stone, but this is Connery’s film. It’s an exceptional performance filled with guile, wisdom and what is apparent from the get-go, anger. He would win an Academy Award for this film and few could argue against it.

Its an incredibly neat and tidy film, it never outstays its welcome or gets too bogged down in courtroom showdowns. It’s gritty and powerful and a reminder of just how good an actor and phenomenal screen presence Connery was. It doesn’t get much better than this.

This review is dedicated to the memory of Sir Sean Connery 25/8/1930 – 31/10/2020 – A true screen icon

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