Saturday, June 15, 2019

The Nun (2018)

I have a soft spot for religious horror movies (I blame The Exorcist) and I definitely have a soft spot for movies in the Conjuring universe.  Chronologically, this is the first film in the universe, taking place before Annabelle: Creation

In 1952 Romania, two nuns are attacked by a demonic entity, resulting in the death of one and the suicide of the other.  A man from town, Frenchie (Jonas Bloquet) finds the body.  The Vatican learns of the situation and sends Father Burke (Demian Bechir) and Sister Irene (Taissa Farmiga) to investigate.  When they stay overnight at the convent, Father Burke reveals that he struggles with guilt over an exorcism gone wrong, and Sister Irene shares visions she had when she was younger.

As the demonic entity wreaks havoc on the abbey, the people in town are also affected.  Frenchie, apparently interested in more than getting into Sister Irene's pants, heads up to the abbey to help.  We have the standard good vs. evil showdown, but this time with a hot townie in the mix, which I appreciate. 

This movie was packed with jump scares that were made up for by the cool and eerie atmosphere.  Possession movies are fairly predictable at this point, but I can't say anything bad about The Nun.  Looking forward to more installments from the Conjuring franchise!

Monday, May 27, 2019

Sinister 2 (2015)

So we're all on the same page that Sinister rocked, right? And you know they weren't going to let that go without a sequel, right?  So no more Ethan Hawke, but James Ransone reprises his role as the deputy.

Single mom Courtney is living at the Oswald's former house with her twin sons, Dylan and Zach.  Dylan is visited at night by the ghost children we know from Sinister and is made to watch the eerie home movies of various children being murdered.  Like why do these little ghosts think that forcing children to watch these creepy ass videos is a good way to make friends? ;)

The deputy, now private investigator and Bughuul-obsessive is trying to break the chain of murders by burning down each house where they happen.  But he's unable to continue his plan once he arrives at the latest house to find Courtney living there.  There's also an abusive husband in the mix, making it difficult for the deputy to save the family from their imminent demise.

As in Sinister, it comes time for the current family/chosen child to make the movie.  Will the plan be thwarted, or does Bughuul win again?  This sequel was actually a lot like the original, just with different characters, but it was alright.  The ending leaves an opening for Sinister 3, which was apparently planned, but shelved due to the poor performance of the sequel.

The Prodigy (2019)

The poor reviews of creepy kid movies have never stopped me from watching one, and The Prodigy is no exception.  Ever since I became a mom, I get even more terrified by these possessed little monsters and you for sure can't keep me away from Piper Chapman facing off with a demonspawn.

After a long struggle to get pregnant, Sarah and John (Taylor Schilling and Peter Mooney) finally have their son Miles (Jackson Robert Scott aka Georgie from the IT remake).  From the start, Miles is very clearly gifted, much to Sarah's excitement.  But as advanced as Miles is academically, he seems to be just as psychotic.  Bad things keep happening as Sarah and John try to get to the bottom of their son's horrifying behavior, and perhaps save him and their family. 

Side note, the reincarnation specialist is Colm Feore, from one of the most underrated Stephen King movies, Storm of the Century.  Nice!

I think a lot of people were annoyed with this movie because they gave away the "twist" fairly early, but I didn't mind it and I found the supernatural aspect in this case to fit pretty well.  The plot holes and weird decisions made by adults were problematic -- for example, why was he still in school after beating a child with a crowbar?!  But overall, I found this entertaining and Miles was creepy AF. 

Monday, February 18, 2019

Final Destination (2000)

Nostalgia day rolls on in my living room and it turns out I've never written a review of the original Final Destination.  WTF.  A classic.   In 2000, I was 17, I had just survived Y2K and I was LOVING this movie in the theaters. Bring me Devon Sawa and Ali Larter and let's rolll.

Pre-9/11 airports always seem so carefree.  Remember when you just kinda waltzed into an airport?  People say that this movie reminds them that they're scared of flying -- flying doesn't scare me as much as it's annoying and squished and inconvenient.  But alas, we all know that the premise of Final Destination is the plane crash, where only a few survive and "cheat death."  Which then continues into multiple sequels that we all know and love.

So now that the few have cheated death, the race to survive begins.  Death is still out to get them, since it missed with the plane.  And isn't the glory of these movies?  The increasingly inventive and cringe-worthy deaths?  This was a new horror concept That's what we all enjoy about the franchise so much -- that thought that it could happen to us all?

Trucks (1997)

Have I seriously never reviewed this movie, which is the knock off of the seriously superior and very coke-fueled Maximum Overdrive?  Today I have a rare 24 hours off, with no family or work, and I'm determined to do some writing.  I got in a nostalgic mood early on, and trolled through Netflix and Amazon looking for comfortable sequels of my favorite franchises, to no avail.  So it will be time to dig for more obscure nostalgia, and first I have landed on Trucks

In this iteration, it's not just a truck stop, but also some cabins that house a hiking tour, which compels this group of people to end up together, surrounded by the now-possessed trucks.  There's all the stereotypes - the grizzled old war veteran, the hippie, the redneck, the strong beautiful woman returning to her hometown, the bickering couple,  the shy teen, the mouthy rebellious teen, and the hero (the much-touted Timothy Busfield).  If you've read the story, it follows pretty closely, if not in a somewhat clunky manner.  Sadly, there are no skeletons driving trucks as depicted by the poster art.  The ending was definitely more of a "woah!" than Maximum Overdrive

While they try to recreate it, the wonderful campiness and environment (Dixie Boy 4 EVAH!)  of Maximum Overdrive just isn't here, even though it's a decent rendition of the SK story.   The story itself is just kind of bizarre, and it lends to overacting and giant green demon trucks, not just a regular movie.