Author Topic: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019  (Read 1326 times)

smirnoff

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #90 on: October 07, 2019, 12:41:49 AM »

Ghost Stories (2017)
"We have to be very careful what we choose to believe."

Whenever I go on a Horror binge I always wonder what will be the first film to put me at risk for nightmares. Ladies and gentlemen, we have our winner. It's a jump scare and it comes late in the film, but this film had been wearing me down getting to that climax. A similar structure to Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, except the acting here is much better and the stories themselves are not so clear in purpose. A couple of familiar faces, like Martin Freeman, give this UK chiller class and there are some clever transitions towards the end. Sloppier than the next film I watched, but this one got me to that point where I start to fear the empty frame.
Rating: ★ ★ ★ - Okay

- Really Scary

I like the premise. Glad you found one that could give you a real scare! :D I'm too chicken to try it.

Dave the Necrobumper

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #91 on: October 08, 2019, 06:09:23 AM »
The Unknown (1927 Tod Browning)

I have known for a very long time about Lon Chaney's ability with cosmetic modification of himself, but in this film he shows both what a good actor he is and his physical ability to perform. His expressive use of his feet for this performance was great.

Story-wise it is a tail of unrequited love, jealousy, and possessiveness. Joan Crawford and Norman Kerry round out the main cast. The ending is tense and given this is Tod Browning I really did not know how it was going to end.

This film is in IMDBs top 50 Horror films, but I have to say it is not much of a horror film, it is really only the ending that brings any possibility of calling it a horror film.

Rating: 75 / 100

- Safe for Sandy

Junior

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #92 on: October 08, 2019, 10:49:17 AM »
The Devils

This was a big one for me, maybe the horror movie held in the highest regard that I hadn't yet seen, so when I saw it was on the Criterion Channel, I knew I had to check it out. The first two things I thought were, damn, Vanessa Redgrave and Oliver Reed were hot! It makes sense that Ken Russell would cast them in this tale of sex-obsessed religious zealots. I didn't know about the historical happening upon which this was based, so for me the most interesting elements were the scheming and plotting that happens by various factions in hopes of getting what they want. It was interesting to see the crazy nuns who act possessed in order to save their lives presented as sympathetic victims rather than unaware idiots. As what amounts to an anarchist tale of the insidious evil that occurs when church and state combine forces, this movie is pretty cool.

As a horror movie, it's just fine. There's one of the more stunning images I've seen recently, the desiccated body of a protestant attached to a wheel mounted high in the air upon which the camera lingers for a good long while. But the rest of the film is more horrific in its implications than its content. The version I watched was, I understand, pretty heavily edited, so perhaps there would be more traditional horror content in the uncut version. I'd like to see it eventually and see if that's right. But until then, this would be high on my historical fiction list but low on my horror one.

B+
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Dave the Necrobumper

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #93 on: October 09, 2019, 07:08:23 AM »
Mardi Gras Massacre (1978 Jack Weis)

Well my dive into bad horror films continues. The villain John is played by William Metzo who is a big fan of the dramatic pause (see here for a typical example). John is into sacrificing 'evil' women, but the cops are looking for him, as he has left several dead bodies lying around. There is a lot of nudity, and some ok gore effects. However there is no tension/scariness. The murders are grizzly. Mostly this is just a poorly (to be generous) acted schlock fest. Worth a group get together for a laugh, particularly when John orders Chinese take-away.

Rating: 46 / 100 (it was better than Death Bed, but only just)

Death Bed: The Bed that Eats (1977 George Barry)

With a title like that you do not expect much, and that's what you get. A dreary voice-over, questionable acting, and a fairly lame plot. I will give the movie some credit, the bed is very good at cleaning up after itself so it is believable it could get away with what it was doing.

Rating: 45 / 100

I assume this is because of Patton Oswalt. If not, you should look up his stand up on this because it's some of my favorite from him.

I will look it up, but no it is because of the podcast Outside the Cinema, then I spotted it on Amazon Prime

I looked it up and sorry to say it was only ok.

oldkid

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #94 on: October 09, 2019, 02:05:03 PM »
Hitchhiking data I found:
https://wandrlymagazine.com/article/hitchhiking/

Sum: The danger to drivers v. hikers isn't the issue, really.  It is more likely to be harmed by falling than by hitchhiking.

Although, the answer, according to California:  Drivers were more likely to commit a crime against a hitchhiker than the other way around.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2019, 02:06:57 PM by oldkid »
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oldkid

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #95 on: October 09, 2019, 02:17:20 PM »
House (1977)

My daughter and I enjoy some Shocktober films every year, and yesterday was her first viewing of House.  She thought it was hilarious.

In a second viewing of this film, I realize that it is much like Audition, a film that is often ruined by its reputation.   Audition is often put in "torture porn" films, but there is very little torture and it is somewhat subdued in comparison with other "torture porn" films.  Even so, House's reputation is that it is insane, a batsh** crazy film.  And it is, to a degree.  Both of these films have the best experience when you approach them cold, without any hint as to their reputation.  The significant part is the shift, when the film presents you one kind of film and then it just changes into something unexpected. 

Even knowing all that was coming, House is just so much fun and quite funny.  The long, almost dull, introduction of the two main girls and their plans for the summer.  The steady build of craziness as the group gets to the house until it all breaks loose at the well.  The film isn't in a hurry to become crazy, and the tone is light, until it isn't. 

I can't remember if I was scared the first time watching it, but I certainly wasn't this time.  It is just a lark, a romp and quite enjoyable.  Loony Tunes horror for a very cartoonish film.

4/5

"It's not art unless it has the potential to be a disaster." Bansky

oldkid

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #96 on: October 09, 2019, 02:33:05 PM »
Annabelle
My daughter and I, in past Shocktobers, quite enjoyed The Conjuring and The Conjuring II.  Frankly, The Conjuring is one of the scariest films I've seen.  Part of what make these films so frightening is the constant reminder of the creepy doll in their "museum" and the hints of the frightening story behind it.  Well, we were prepped to begin that story.  (rub hands in anticipation)

And I was disappointed.  Not scary at all, and while the acting and story were adequate, it didn't come close to Conjuring levels I was expecting.  The twist at the end was fun, but there was no build up of tension.

Oh, I'm sorry, one major source of tension for my daughter and I: every time the protagonist used the sewing machine.  We knew she was going to get mangled by that monster.  Eventually, her finger was stabbed and she put a band aid on it, and that was it.

This movie had so much potential, I'm very disappointed.

2.5/5

The Curse of La Llorona
I watched this one on my own, because I didn't know it was a Conjuring film, until the priest in Annabelle showed up (he does his best to raise the tension in both films, but doesn't help much).  Okay, now we got some scary stuff.  Child abduction, a bit of mystery, a hint of Scooby Doo (the cartoon is seen briefly), yeah this could work.

And because I was so let down by Annabelle, it does.  I got a bit scared and it was a fun story.  Afterwords, I realize that all the scares were jump scares and I mostly enjoyed it because  Raymond Cruz played such a good role in the final third of the film, and I love him from the TV show, The Closer. 

In the end, I realize that there is a similar problem here as with Annabelle: The characters don't have a build up of intensity when horrible things happen.  Sure, there's a little wariness, especially by the children, but until the full reveal, there is too much of the everyday pleasantries that fill our every day and not as much of the mounting terror that makes for a good horror film.   Again, this film is better than Annabelle in this regard, but this is far from a horror classic.

I really appreciated that the cast was almost all Hispanic and it was enjoyable while it was running.  I'd call it a distraction, more than anything else.

3/5
"It's not art unless it has the potential to be a disaster." Bansky

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #97 on: October 09, 2019, 03:14:59 PM »
Dead right about Annabelle. The sequel is better, but still not up to belonging in the shared universe.

La Llorona comes up on my airplane choices. That's probably how I'll watch it one day. I've seen two earlier versions of the story, but the definitive take seems to still be unmade.
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oldkid

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #98 on: October 09, 2019, 03:16:25 PM »
Dead right about Annabelle. The sequel is better, but still not up to belonging in the shared universe.


Rotten Tomatoes rates both Annabelle sequels decently.  I'll try to catch up with both of them this month.
"It's not art unless it has the potential to be a disaster." Bansky

Bondo

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Re: Shocktober Group Marathon 2019
« Reply #99 on: October 09, 2019, 07:15:38 PM »
@oldkid re hitchhiking: Suppose the way to look at it is the most dangerous thing about hitchhiking is riding in a car.