måndag 22 december 2014

[REC]4 (2014)

I'm a huge fan of the [REC] saga, particulary the first two. The first one is just a great horrormovie and the first sequel is among one of the rare few - the sequels who are as good as the original movie. Heck, I even love the reason behind all of this that is revealed towards the end of [REC]2, something that I know a lot of people don't. Part three was a fun watch too, although the dark and nasty tone of the first two was sorely missed. It felt more like an 80:s horrormovie.

So now it's finally here, the movie we have been waiting for. The final part in the saga and I will admit to being a bit peeved when I learned that the whole thing was set on a boat. No major apocalypse in the streets here, something I was hoping for. But the trailer looked good so I kept an open mind.

And I am happy to say that [REC]4 is a solid piece in the series. The movie begins with a couple of policemen entering the building where the first two movies were taking place to place explosives and find Angela Vidal, the heroine of the first movie still alive. Flash forward an unknown amount of time and we are on a boat with a security lockdown. Angela and the two policemen are in quarantine, a lab has been set up and people are working on something, possibly a cure. We learn that (slight spoiler for part 2) Angela is not carrying the virus like everyone, including the audience, thinks. The people doing all the testing have a testsubject locked up and soon someone let's it out. Mayhem ensues. Terrific mayhem ensues.

I have a couple of issues with the movie. First, there is an awful lot of shakycam which can be quite disorienting in some of the attackscenes when everything is shot in closeups. I saw the movie at a cinema and suspect that it might look better on a tv, time will tell.

The second issue I have with the movie is a minor but sad one. And now there will be major SPOILERS of [REC]2 and [REC]4. It turns out that the cause of it all is a parasite, a large slimy thing that wants to find the perfect host. This is incredibly sad to me because I loved the reveal in part two when it turns out that the whole thing is a disease that might have been (accidentally? Haven't seen part two since it was released) created by the Catholic church. There are no demons in part 4, something that i truly missed. Sure, the concept of a satanic parasite is quite fun but the notion of a satanic virus is supremely cool. This was a letdown for me but it didn't stop me from enjoying the movie. A lot. This just struck me hours after watching it and it's what makes me a little sad. I wanted more demons. END OF SPOILERS

And the bottom line is that [REC]4 is a great horrorflick. It's tense from the start, building up to an awesome explosion of violence and mayhem and never let's you down as it frantically runs along to a great climax. It does tend to focus more on jumpscares than trying to freak you out in the darkness but there is a sequence towards the end that involves infected monkeys that is a nailbiter. And I am happy to say (this must be the first time for me) that this isn't the gorefest I was expecting from the trailer. Sure, there is gore, but the movie is more brutally violent than messily gory which works great.

It might not have been what I expected and hoped for but it's a great finale to the saga.

måndag 24 november 2014

Maniac nurses (1990)

Seriously, I have no idea how to properly rate Maniac nurses. No clue, it's just so mindbogglingly bisarre and strange that just explaining the plot taxes my brain too much. But here goes.

A number of nurses hang around in an old hospital in their sexy underwear, lying about like footage from a lingerie commercial. While not fondling each other they kidnap young women and torture them or just go about blowing the heads of men. Or each other. The leader of the motley crew, Ilsa, has a young daughter that she either wants to make love to or already has a sexual relationship with (it really isn't made clear). The daughter, Sabrina, is a sociopath that reads violent comicbooks and just kills people randomly. While all this is going on there is a somewhat pretentious narration explaining why everyone is a sexual pervert and from time to time some text pops up on the screen scoring everything, dealing out points to all the maniac nurses.

If this had been a porno with all the porno edited out it would explain why this is so baffingly incompetent but it doesn't seem like it is. I guess the director just wanted to make a violent movie with naked women and made it up as he went along. There is some sort of perverted satisfaction in watching this but I can't really decide if I was actually entertained by it. The dubbing is awful, the ladies cannot act whatsoever and nothing makes any good damn sense!

And the best thing about it? I bought it from the director himself while at Weekend of horrors 2014 in Oberhausen. I am a proud owner of a personally signed dvd. I just wished that I had seen the movie before I left Germany, I have a lot of questions for him now.

Just a big WTF. And I would probably watch it again with beer and friends.

fredag 21 november 2014

Aux yeux des vivants aka Among the living (2014)

Why are Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo so obsessed with violence that truly hurts? Sick fucking bastards. This time they're telling a story about three young kids on the start of summer vacation that see a strange man carry a bound woman into an abandoned movieset in the woods. They follow and discover a quite dysfunctional family living in the ruins. Mayhem and death ensues.

Among the living might not go all the way Inside style (there is far less onscreen gore here and actually a couple of surprisingly gorefree deaths that made me wonder if I was watching a censored version) but there is some pretty harrowing brutal violence going on here as the movie progresses. The only flaw of the story is that it never really manages to blend the Stand by me-ish part of the care-free youths roaming the outskirts of their hometown with the more straightforwards horror bits. Both parts are fine enough with good child actors and a number of creepy bits but as the movie is only 85 minutes long including end titles we never really get to go deep enough into them as we really need and want to. The main villain is quite creepy and the death he dishes out is at times nicely harrowing but it isn't enough. A good flick for sure but nowhere near the insanity of Inside or Livid. It makes you wonder if the movie was cut down for pacing, it sure feels like that.

I do love the sight of a very pregnant Beatrice Dalle brandishing a large kitchen knife in the beginning of the movie, brought a nice grin to my face.

tisdag 11 november 2014

Sucker Punch (2011)

This is a cautionary tale.

This movie feels like it was written by a hormonally imbalanced 13 year old teenager who has overdosed on video games, which paints a not so pretty picture about the mindset of Zack Snyder especially since the whole fucking movie revolves around watching Emily Browning dress up like a thirteen year old schoolgirl. Everything is set to (mostly) awful popmusic that very rarely fit the tone of the movie other than the million scenes where the girls are walking in slow motion towards the camera, an overused theme if there ever was one that could have bordered on parody if I didn't know that the whole thing is totally moronically serious. It all boils down to the viewer enduring waves upon waves of Snyders patently retarded fight scenes where every punch ends in slomo and when the story is as bad as this you wonder what the hell is wrong with his brain.

At least it's better than Watchmen. The only reason I'm giving it one and a half star is that I kinda like the first two sequences, the samurais and steam zombies. And the fact that it flopped. But the rest is just a big bloated turd.

Psycho pike (1992)

Psycho pike! Psychooo pike!

I hate fish. Sure, sharks are cool and majestic creatures and there are quite a few deep sea creatures that I enjoy scaring myself with by looking at pictures of them on the internet. But most of them are just smelly creatures that really don't deserve to live. Then there are the Pikes. Pikes are vile and disgusting creatures, massmurderers of our lakes. You will never see a Discovery special teaching you that they should be revered, I can assure you that. I've always wanted to see a killer pike movie and thought that I never would get the chance but to my amazement there had been one out there for twenty-two years! Ok, it doesn't seem like it got an official release but still! Twenty-two years! There was a large hole in soul until today! I finally feel complete!

The movie? Not particulary good. Low budget semi-serious stuff about pollution causing a pike to grow huge and some people that want to hide it. Two couples out on a fishing trip. You know. The usual schtick. Poor acting and very little actual pike. The final attack is awesome though and the pike itself is rubbergoodness beyond awesome. The movie not so much. It's obvious that they went for quirky (and who can blame them?) and some of it works. Sorta. I did have a nice time watching it but mostly for the novelty of it.

lördag 1 november 2014

Soon back from the dead

If anyone cares the reason there has been no activity at all here is the fact that I have been home taking care of my daughter for the last two months. Swedens paid paternity leave. Or whatever it is called. Having a baby means very little movies, especially after they start walking.

So, soon. Soon.

torsdag 28 augusti 2014

Star crystal (1986)

Star Crystal really wants to be Alien but ends up like the slow little cousin that maybe stayed under water for an extended period of time and suffered brain damage because of oxygen depravation. It plays out its cards straight, an expedition on Mars discovers a strange egglike object in the ground and brings it onboard their spaceship. On route they are all killed and their craft taken to a spacestation that has some sort of meltdown and explodes, leaving only five survivors on the very same ship. Soon enough they start to die one by one, killed by a tentacled creature that somehow has control over the ship.

Sounds good, eh? Not really. I could go on and on about the low budget inhibiting the scifi elements of the story, the very strange design of the spacecraft where every room is connected by small tunnels and the piss poor acting but I will leave you with one thing. The ending. There will be SPOILERS now but frankly, read on. It will spare you 90 minutes that you will never get back. You see, while killing the crew one by one and sucking their bodies dry of all fluids the alien creature accesses the ships computer to learn about humanity and ends up reading the bible. Then everyone becomes friends, the alien apologizes and everyone departs as friends. There is even a scene towards the end where we are supposed to feel sorry for the creature as it is left behind. Yes. I'm not making this up. End of SPOILERS.

So, what we have here is a cheap Alien ripoff with one of the most preposterous endings of all time. At least it is weird enough to be one of those "Ok, did you hear about the one where..." movies.

And I love that poster which has nothing to do with the movie, it feels more like it was ripped off from Lifeforce. Those were the days when the poster really meant something.