Friday the 13th: From Worst to Best

Friday the 13th: From Worst to Best

I think I’ve made it clear that I really like the Friday the 13th movies. There are twelve of these movies, with a thirteenth slated to come out next year and while they get a bad rap for being schlocky tits-and-gore horror movies (spoilers: they are 100% unapologetic schlocky tits-and-gore horror movies), they are for the most part way better than they deserve to be. Sure, the series has its lows, but there are more decent-to-great Friday the 13th movies than most franchises have movies, total. So, if you’re interested in getting your feet wet with arguably the biggest slasher series, I’m going to let you know what is worth watching, and what you should skip. Here’s the Friday the 13th series, ranked from worst to best. Obviously, this is my personal opinion. If you disagree with my rankings, great. I don’t care. Welcome to the internet. (more…)

Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989)

Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989)

Here we go again. A week ago I rambled about Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers, and I thought it was pretty mediocre. It was poor enough that most people would let the franchise go and say “well, that was pretty shit, so I’m not going to see the next one unless I happen to hear good things about it”. I feel like if I was around in the ’80s I would feel the same way. However, here I am, less than an hour until midnight, having just watched the fifth installment into this franchise that refuses to die.

Halloween 5 is the worst of the Halloween movies that I’ve seen so far. The problem with it is that I can’t immediately dismiss it as being a piece of trash, because it isn’t. It isn’t wholly irredeemable, and that pisses me off. There are facets of this movie that are good despite a vast majority of it being a confusing, irritating mess.

Halloween 5 was directed by Franco-Swiss director Dominique Othenin-Girard and stars Danielle Harris and Donald Pleasence returning as Jamie Lloyd and Dr. Loomis. A year after the events of Halloween 4, Michael Myers returns to Haddonfield again to try and finish off Jamie once and for all.

Oh, also, Jamie has a psychic link to Michael Myers.

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Under The Skin (2013)

Under The Skin (2013)

Arthouse films aren’t for everyone. They’re often vague, confusing, and come across as being strange and different for the sake of being strange and different. Now, I’m by no means an authority on arthouse and experimental cinema, but I’ve been through the surrealist rodeo a couple times. Being someone who really likes the visual and technical elements of film, I can enjoy certain art films for their imagery and cinematography, even if their #2deep4me messages fly over my head.

Under the Skin is a sci-fi horror film directed by Jonathan Glazer. While definitely an art film, Under the Skin’s plot is easier to digest than something like, say, Alejandro Jodorowsky’s The Holy Mountain. That being said, it doesn’t reduce how evocative and mesmerizing the imagery is in this movie, nor does it make some of the scenes any less uncomfortable to sit through. The movie follows a simple premise. An alien woman (Scarlett Johansson) is sent to Earth to process men for an unknown reason. In order to capture the men she needs, she decides to pose as a beautiful young woman and seduce them. As she ensnares prey after prey, her time among humans begins to rub off on her and she becomes curious about the different experiences and emotions humans go through. See? That wasn’t so hard. (more…)

The Conjuring (2013)

The Conjuring (2013)

Holy shit. I have no idea why it took me so long to watch this movie.

In case you live under a rock like me, James Wan is being heralded as one of the best directors working in horror at the moment. Directly responsible for starting three of the most famous recent franchises in horror (Saw, Insidious, and The Conjuring), Wan has quite the blood spattered, demon haunted pedigree. The Conjuring, widely considered Wan’s masterpiece (which may possibly be dethroned by its newly released sequel) has even spawned a spin off movie franchise. Like it or not, Wan is probably here to stay and I think we’re all better off for it.

The Conjuring is based on a story from real life demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren (played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga), and follows a case from 1971 where they are recruited to investigate a farmhouse that the Perron family has just moved into. The Perrons slowly begin to notice a couple odd things happening with their house and to their family, but as the days march onward things begin to escalate and the Perrons begin to fear for their lives. Once Ed and Lorraine are on the case, they need to do everything they can to get to get to the bottom of the haunting and overcome their greatest challenge to date. (more…)

Ava’s Possessions (2015)

Ava’s Possessions (2015)

Remember that last post I made, where I briefly wrote about horror comedies? Well, I found one that actually kinda worked. I said that you need to strike a balance between horror and comedy not swaying too far to either side, and what I didn’t realize is that you can also let both those aspects fall to the background and let the story shine through. The reason I didn’t really consider that a horror comedy with very little horror or comedy would work is because I thought it would get too cluttered and water down both the scares and the laughs, making it a homogeneous blend of boring. Today, I managed to find a movie that plays down the horror and the comedy, and doesn’t really suffer from it.

Ava’s Possessions is a dark comedy/ drama that also happens to involve Exorcist style demonic possession. It’s written and directed by Jordan Galland who has a whole slew of credits on IMDb, but hasn’t worked on anything that I’ve ever heard of before. I honestly only checked this movie out because of a recommendation from the YouTube channel Good Bad Flicks. Netflix’s weird rating algorithm listed it as one star for me so I was never really possessed (ha!) to check it out but then again, Netflix told me I would love Tammy, so I don’t know what I was expecting.

The movie starts up as Ava (Louisa Krause), a young New York woman striking out on her own, is exorcised of a demon possessing her body. Once she’s back to normal she sees the chaos and destruction she caused while possessed, and needs to put her life back together. While trying to get back into the swing of things, she finds some clues that lead her to believe something happened one of the nights she was possessed that nobody told her about. She goes off to try and get to the bottom of it all while trying her best to rehabilitate and reintegrate into society. (more…)