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I’m also a big fan of cult films, both popular and obscure, but leaning more towards the obscure side. This is why I do a lot of my shopping for new (to me) movies at thrift stores. You never know what you’ll come across in those endless stacks of VHS tapes and dusty DVD’s.
Tom Atkins is by far my favorite actor; he's mostly known for his characters in The Fog, Halloween III: Season of the Witch, and Night of the Creeps. All three of these films are massive favorites of mine. As for writer/directors, John Carpenter is my go-to guy. Hasn't let me down yet!
I will write reviews from time to time, but you shouldn’t expect much in-depth analysis. I don’t rate movies based off of a “critical eye” or anything like that. If I enjoy a movie, I will rate it fairly high, whether or not it’s a “well-crafted” movie. I watch movies for fun. I’ve never understood the type of people who go into a movie on the lookout for things to complain about. On the contrary, many movies I’ve come to loathe over the years are considered “classics” such as A Clockwork Orange and Blue Velvet. I guess there’s some weight to taste being subjective, huh?
(As an aside regarding some of the mass-disliked negative reviews I've left on here: Calm down, guys. I don't take the act of reviewing films all that seriously, and if you do, I assure you I'm not trying to get underneath your obviously tightly-stretched skin. I just like throwing my opinion out into the ether. Truthfully, these days, I much prefer Letterboxd because people seem much more chill over there. I think the massive amount of anonymity and lack of community aspects to IMDb has resulted in a much more hostile environment. You know what people on Letterboxd do when someone negatively reviews a movie they enjoy? Nine times out of ten, they just move on. Here's another truth: I actually enjoy reading negative reviews for films (among other things) that I enjoy. A difference in opinion in the art world should be welcomed, not shunned. Discourse and differences of opinion is a huge part of what makes this enjoyable, not to mention worth the effort of voicing said opinions. Otherwise, what's the point?)
As my screen name implies, I am a semi-devoted viewer (and collector) of the VHS format. I buy/watch movies on an array of different formats ranging from VHS to Blu-Ray and Netflix, but I enjoy watching many older movies on VHS as, for me, it adds another element of immersion. Immersion into the film or the time period? Well, A little of both, I guess.
I’m also a huge fan of the Attitude Era of the World Wrestling Federation, as well as the Ruthless Aggression Era that followed. I quit watching around 2006/7. From the look of things, I’ll probably never return to being a regular viewer.
TOP 10 SHOWS:
1. Mad Men
2. The X-Files
3. The Last Dance
10. Golden Girls
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Scary Movie (2000)
Not bad, all these years later.
Hadn't seen this one in years. Still a fun and enjoyable spoof on the horror flicks of the time with a near-lethal dose of the raunchy comedies that were coming out post-American Pie.
Looking forward to revisiting the others. I remember really enjoying whichever one had Charlie Sheen in it.
The Exorcist III (1990)
A "wonderfull" slow-burn.
Exorcist III encapsulates the type of bleak and atmospheric slow-burn that I live for. The perfect horror film to sit down to during a particularly cloudy day, doubly so if there's a slow drizzle of rain patting about. What a ride!
Halloween Kills (2021)
The ending to the 2018 film was way too satisfying to be undone for such a mediocre, convoluted, needlessly padded and ultimately underwhelming sequel.
Bump in the Night (1991)
Not bad, not great.
Sometimes I get in the mood for a made-for-television movie, what with their predictable plots, completely unknown cast (in this particular case, however, Christopher Reeve plays a pretty believable scumbag), point-and-shoot cinematography, and overly-dramatic dialogue that's only there to fill time rather than add depth to the characters -- you know, all that good stuff. Hey, say what you will, but I find them to be pretty nostalgic.
Going off title alone, I assumed this flick would be riding firmly in the horror lane. Not the case -- this is definitely a thriller through and through, though you could make the argument that because of the dark subject matter at hand there's some slight crossover. And while it's not a good movie, I think that dark subject matter is actually handled quite tastefully.
Feels kind of like a Richard Laymon novel was tamed down and adapted to screen.
There are better ways to spend an hour and a half, and there are worse. In 1991, it would've been a treat to see something like this at home. Nowadays, not so much.
Considered a classic of the genre for good reason!
It's pretty funny how this one initially feels by-the-numbers before quickly establishing itself as a true uniquity in its genre. Just the right amounts of terror and comedic relief, with enjoyable performances and characters, and beautiful cinematography. I see why so many folks consider this an all-time favorite.
Freddy vs. Jason (2003)
Plenty of good 00's horror out there, contrary to popular belief, but this isn't one of the good ones.
This was my first time watching this film in about 13 or 14 years. I remember enjoying it back then, but this time it took me three separate viewing sessions to actually get through it.
A few fun scenes in a vat of bubbling slog-slop. Genuinely challenging to get through, and only made possible because of those few and far between enjoyable segments.
There are far better 00's horror film excursions to be had.
The Slumber Party Massacre (1982)
Be prepared for some sleaziness!
Had the privilege of watching this one on VHS. Definitely an enjoyable slasher of the sleazeball variety, but I think I much prefer Sorority House Massacre to this.
Looking forward to trying out the sequels -- I know 2 has cultivated quite the cult following.
The Mummy (1932)
Excuse the heresy...
Yeah, I don't know... I just couldn't get into this one. It wasn't what I expected at all, and it's not like I don't enjoy being wrong under these circumstances, but... I had no idea I was essentially getting into a slow, meandering drama that just so happens to involve a mummy.
Where was the atmosphere, the tension? I hate leaving a bad rating on a film that's undoubtedly considered to be one of the classics, but I was bored to death.
American Horror Story: Gaslight (2021)
Please tell me I wasn't the only one thinking of Cory Feldman in Friday the 13th Part 4 when Doris was shaving her head...
Brain Damage (1988)
This was my first experience with a Frank Henenlotter film, and I have to say, I think I just became an instant superfan. Brain Damage cultivates a perfect crop of campy, pulpy, comedic body horror. 1980s NYC as a backdrop adds just the right splash of grime and grit, too. Can't wait to check out this guy's other films.
Blood Rage (1987)
One of the few THANKSGIVING slashers!
Wonderfully cheesy slasher, but I wish it'd been a little more over the top. Great gore effects, fun characters; this one's a pretty good time.
Gore-soaked and psychologically disturbing.
1980's Maniac feels more like a depraved, psychologically disturbing character study than a slasher. No cheese or campiness to be had here; this film manages to conjure almost unbearable heights of uneasiness with occasional moments of stomach-churning gore. What a ride.
My Bloody Valentine (1981)
Stellar '81 slasher!
Absolute brilliant 1981 slasher affair that doubles as a whodunnit. I loved the blue collar, small town setting, and all its inhabitants. This will definitely become a regular watch. Highly recommended!
Review of the audio commentaries.
This is my favorite film of all time, and yet I've never written a formal review for it. And that ain't about to change now -- much too overwhelming.
I would, however, like to review the various audio commentaries that have been done over the years, starting with one featuring John Carpenter, Debra Hill, and Jamie Lee Curtis. I chose this one first because I have an inkling that it's one of the older ones, considering Debra Hill is present.
While I did thoroughly enjoy this commentary, I have a feeling some of the later ones will be much better. About a month or so ago, I listened to John and Debra do a commentary for The Fog. It instantly became one of my favorite commentaries. Why this particular commentary falls short for me is simple... They aren't in the same room together! The best I can tell, separate commentaries took place with John, Debra and Jamie Lee and were later spliced together. How bizarre! I learned a lot nonetheless but to say this pieced-together format is annoying/distracting would be an UNDERSTATEMENT.
Any sense of flow is tarnished when you hear the speech-program announce to you who is about to speak. Plus, when people are in the same room together, there's a certain type of energy that can't be replicated, say, over Skype -- but ESPECIALLY when the recordings are COMPLETELY SEPARATE and spliced together like some elementary school kid's photograph collage project...
I'm fairly new to commentaries, so I hope this is a one-off and not some bizarre subgenre.
Death Line (1972)
Too slow, too boring.
Wow, a cannibal movie that manages to be incredibly boring. Pretty unfortunate. Even Donald Pleasence's witty performance as a snarky detective does little to push this film into watchable territory.
There are slow-burns, and there are aimless-meanderings. This film feels like the latter.
IT'S OCTOBER, BABY! WOOO!
A couple months ago, I read PANDEMONIUM! By Lucas Mangum and Ryan Harding, a badass, gorefest horror novel heavily influenced by both old school wrestling and, you guessed it, DEMONS! Being a huge fan of the Attitude Era of WWF, as well as the early days of ECW, I was overly familiar with all the wrasslin' inspiration. As far as the Demons influence, it was admittedly lost on me -- because I'd never seen either of the films. We all have our blind spots, I guess.
Reading that novel and enjoying it so much was what finally pushed me to carve out time to watch this film. And, hey, what better way to start off our favorite month of the year, right?
This goopy, pulpy Italian splatterfest was a balls-out blast from start to finish. Absolute chaos incarnate. I loved it!
Audio Commentary Review
I've never written a formal review for this film, but the gist of it is that while I rarely skip it during this time of year, I've never cared for it much. There are things I like and things I don't, but it all boils down to how much I loathe the mask(s).
Anyway, I popped the Blu-ray in for background noise today and realized I'd yet to've listened to the audio commentary with Jamie Lee Curtis, Steve Miner and Sean Clark. I've heard better commentaries but this one was pretty good. I had no idea Jamie was responsible for getting the ball rolling on this project as much as she did, going as far as to have lunch with Debra Hill and John Carpenter to discuss potential ideas.
I'd give the commentary a solid 7/10. Definitely worth listening to for any fan of the franchise.
Incredibly gripping and beautiful Spaghetti Western. Highly recommended to fans of the genre.
Untold: Crime and Penalties (2021)
A mafia documentary disguised as a sports documentary. Glorifies gang/crime culture a little too much for my taste.
An absolute epic insight into Richard Nixon's life. This cast was STACKED to the rafters, full of actors I adore, and they all did stellar performances. Fantastic all around, though admittedly at times somewhat difficult to keep up with. Highly recommended for anyone interested on the subject. You'll learn a lot.
Untold: Breaking Point (2021)
Good sports doc.
I'm not a big tennis fan but this was still very enjoyable as someone who knows next to nothing about the sport and its players. Netflix's Untold series is really filling the 30 for 30 void for me since I have no way to watch it anymore. I just wish these episodes were grouped together for easier access -- I really don't understand the decision to split them up. What is this, a scavenger hunt?
UNDERRATED EARLY 90's ACTION AFFAIR!
This flick is underrated as all get-out. The story here isn't going to blow you away, but the action sequences and beautiful cinematography sure will. I loved the snowy, mountainous and lush landscapes. They made for the perfect backdrop to this thrill ride.
There's even a kill in this film involving stalactites that felt like it belonged in a Friday the 13th flick! Man, I had a great time with this one. If you're looking for a new-to-you snowy flick to watch this winter, you can't go wrong with this pulpy action affair.
Space Cowboys (2000)
It's no masterpiece by any stretch, but it's still a great movie. Seeing Tommy Lee Jones, Donald Sutherland and Clint Eastwood together is such a treat.
Road to Perdition (2002)
This early 1930s crime/drama/adventure flick packs a serious emotional punch. Amazing acting, story and cinematography all around. Loved it.
The Best of Enemies (2019)
Absolute phenomenal true story made into an equally phenomenal film. This one takes place practically in my backyard!