June 30, 2011

Quick Review: The Violent Kind (2011)

"The Shitty Kind."

The Butcher Brothers. The Brothers Strause. McG... Is there a filmmaker(s) out there with a pretentious name that can actually make a decent movie? I'll give the Butcher Brothers credit for The Hamiltons, which was decent, but other than that, the answer is no. You shouldn't be able to make up a nickname or special moniker for yourself, until you've, oh I don't know, earned the right?  

The Violent Kind opens with a clothed sex scene and a drug deal gone wrong, and an avant-garde credits sequence. Woo! 

It's really about group of bikers that couldn't make the SAMCRO cut if their lives depended on it, and their crazy adventures at a birthday party. They walk around, talk, stare at girls, and mean mug for about 20 minutes, until Tiffany Shepis gets possessed by... aliens (I think) and tries to kill a guy for fingering her. She also climbs on the ceiling, and acts all possessed. Up to this point, the movie isn't all that bad (though dull), but don't worry, the Butcher Brothers have an ace up their sleeve: ghostly greasers. 

Yep, a gang of ghost greasers shows up, lead by Giovanni Ribisi's less-talented brother, and proceeds to listen to crappy oldies and act all 50's style. And Talk. Talk, talk, talk. From here on out, there's something about aliens (?) and an event that will change the world, and we're not really sure what happens. The main problem here is that this movie thinks itself clever, and spends most of its running time showing the audience, just how clever it is. Over, and over, and over again. 

There's a good flick here somewhere, but it's buried underneath so much quirky and lame shit that it ceases to matter at about the halfway point. There are some things about this movie that are interesting, though they never full amount to much. Here they are:

The chicks, man. This movie had some pretty hot chicks.
Tiffany Shepis. It's always fun to watch her act slutty.
This Scene. I was like, "WTF?!?"
The possession stuff was mildly interesting, until we realized it was all a ruse.
That sky. It was pretty bad ass.
This shit, whatever it was, was kinda cool looking.
Everything else about the movie was a mess. The story was confused and vague, the acting was over the top and annoying, the CGI blood sucked, and most of it made little sense. It's obvious that the movie was meant to be equal parts disturbing, clever, and deeply original, but in the end what it ends up being is frustrating and tedious. I blame Rob Zombie; everyone these days wants to make their own Devil's Rejects, but none seem to be able to.

Any way you slice it, Tiffany Shepis is a vision of loveliness.


June 27, 2011

Review: Mother's Day (2011)

"Like the old adage says: 'Someone else's home is where the crazy bitch's heart is'... That's it, right?"

It's about time that Hollywood remade a Horror flicked that kinda sucked and could actually benefit from a re-telling. The original mother's day was a Troma Film about a creepy old mom and her two sons who end up raping and terrorizing some dumb, unsuspecting girls in the woods. I say that because in the 70's/80's, most female victims in these films were just morons, which really was the point of it all. Many love the old Troma craziness of decades gone by, us included, but let's be honest, most Troma flicks were more camp than quality, and while that was an awesome thing, remaking some of that schlock isn't the worst idea we've heard.

He froze in place at the sight of Lloyd Kaufman's ghost, wondering if he had somehow shamed it. Deciding that he hadn't, he commenced with the stabbing.
The remake approaches things from a different angle, and actually has more than the average rape-revenge story going on for it. On the run from the police, a family of criminals return to their family home to hole up and plan their big getaway. If course the new residents are having a party when they arrive, and everything goes to hell. Gun violence, knife violence, pool ball violence... the hell is definitely a gory and wet one.  

And a sexy one.
Rebecca De Mornay plays crazy really well, and she's great here as the schizo mother who uses her kids to satisfy her sadistic whims. There's actually some depth to her performance, which was a nice change of pace for this type of movie; she wasn't all crazy. There was a tender and loving side to her too. She even had an odd code that she lived by, and as long as you followed her code, you might not have to die painfully.

Of course, most of the morons in the film refused to follow her code, and died painfully.
That's the nature of the beast though, isn't it? No one really uses their brains in these flicks, and if they did, they'd be pretty boring to sit through. Mother's Day wasn't boring. In fact, it was pretty tension-filled and bloody, and managed to keep us at full attention for the entire running time. The hot chicks helped things along too, although not much of the movie was very sexy. Unless you find disturbing things sexy, then it was. Creep.

"Kiss the dolly where it pees... NOW!"
The supporting cast was pretty solid as well, with some of them even turning in great performances. Chief among the "greats" was Patrick John Flueger as murderous brother Ike Koffin. He's not pure evil, and he makes us actually feel for him at certain points, despite his nasty actions. Warren Cole and Deborah Ann Woll were equally as compelling as the other Koffin kids, and it was great to watch them all do their thing. Jamie King, as ever, played the harrowed heroine to a T. It was also great to see AJ Cook and Alexa Vega show up in very small, but entertaining supporting roles.

That's it, pretend it's a dick.
We were not fans of Darren Lynn Bousman's Repo: The Genetic Opera, and his Saw sequels were what they were, which really didn't do much for us either way. Here though, Bousman gives us a smart and edgy glimpse into the fabric of a deranged family, and he pulls it off very well. He has a feel for this kind of stuff, and in our humble opinion, this might be his best work to date. More like this please, Darren.

She is not messing around!
Mother's Day is not only a great remake of a campy 80's cult classic, but it's a solid, well made Horror film capable of standing on its own. It delivers the goods not only viscerally, but thematically as well, and manages to be entertaining and exciting throughout. It could have lost an extra character or two, as keeping track of so many and their "stories" was a bit jarring, but that's a minor complaint. If you like a good old fashioned home invasion flick, then pick up a copy of this one asap.



What's that you say? The pictures of the movie's hot chicks are missing? Never fear, just glance below for your eye-candy... creeps.

Horror Hotties: The Girls of Mother's Day (2011)

Here's a sampling of the carnal goods display in Mother's Day. Ironically enough, it will be mostly Fathers who will enjoy this post.

June 22, 2011

Review: The Tunnel (2011)

"Not since Houseboat of Horror has an Australian film been so terrifying, albeit for completely different reasons..."

I was wondering when Australia was going to get involved in the first person/found footage game... alright, I really wasn't, but they did, and so here we are. The Tunnel is a Blair Witch style POV flick, in which a group of journalists head into the vast tunnel system beneath Sydney (Australia), to investigate a rash of disappearing homeless people. They're also interested in uncovering the truth behind the New South Wales Government's (also in Australia) sudden abandonment of a water project or something... either way they're morons for going down into the creepy tunnels. You know it just can't end well.

"Aw yeah mate, I'd go down there. No worries."
Once in the tunnels, unexplainable things like odd sounds and disappearing gear begin to plague the crew, but it's not until one of them goes missing that the true terror really starts. The further and further into the labyrinth of dark, scummy tunnels they go, the more they begin to realize that they're truly fucked. What's down there with them, lurking in the darkness? What happened to Tangles? What the fuck kind of name is Tangles anyway? Why do these movies always have to have one sneaky, lying bitch in them, that ends up putting everyone's life in danger because they're so selfish and opportunistic? Far be it from me to spoil you on these mysteries, but I will say this; that bitch would have got left.

Yep, time to go. Oh, and the bitch stays.
If you're claustrophobic this movies will probably give you fits. If you're scared of tunnels, ditto. If the sound of the Aussie dialect gives you the willies, just skip the whole thing altogether. If you do appreciate all of the aforementioned things though, along with a heavy dose of tension and doom thrown in for good measure, then you are going to love this movie.

In a lot of ways, The Tunnel is the same as most found footage genre flicks; there's the shaky cam, the "real" feel of it all, it's dark and creepy... one major difference though lies in the way it's all presented. If someone happened upon this movie on a random cable channel, they might get suckered into thinking it's a real documentary, because it feels exactly like one. If I had to pick one movie that it reminded me of in tone, not content, I'd have to go with 2010's Lake Mungo. they both had that Docudrama tone about them, and it was intentional in both cases.

Tonight on 20/20, we'll tell you what fucked this guy up for life.
Aside from the film itself, there are 2 things about The Tunnel that are genuinely notable: First of all, this is the first movie ever released directly to Bittorrent by the filmmakers, and that's a huge deal.

In a digital world where Hollywood complains that movie downloads are killing the industry (which they aren't) and sues 12-year-olds for downloading crappy copies of movies that are usually shitty to begin with, the producers of The Tunnel decided to buck the system and release it online to garner interest in their film... and they encouraged people to download and share it.

For this reason alone, the DVD is worth purchasing.

The second thing, which kinda goes hand in hand with the first, is that they sold individual frames of the film online to raise money for their efforts, giving anyone who donates a chance to own a part of the film. Even cooler than that, the producers are going to choose one frame, and the owner of that frame will get 1% of the profit of the film. That's just ridiculously cool. How do you not want to support guys like that?

"Free? Why in the bloody hell would you give it away for free!?"
My guess is that instead of falling by the wayside and wallowing in relative obscurity, like so many small horror flicks do, The Tunnel will actually make some money and gain some much deserved exposure, and all because the filmmakers thought outside of the box. Big kudos have to be given to the ingenuity and balls at work here. Good on ya, boys!

With all of that being said, I'm sure a lot of people are thinking "It can't be that good if it's free, right?" Well no, not right. Much to my surprise, The Tunnel was a pretty damn well-made movie, with nary a sign of cheapness to be found. It's no $100 million opus mind you, but neither is it some cheap POS that they needed to give away for free to get anyone to even look at it.

You should have stayed above ground.
It's gritty, atmospheric, creepy, and feels real in pretty much every aspect. If you don't like the whole hand held/found footage thing, you probably won't like this movie. If you do though, then this should please you greatly. It's light on the blood, but then again this movie isn't going for jump scares or kill count; it's aim is to skeeve you out and make you sweat, and it does its job rather well.

Check the official site HERE, to own a piece of this movie and/or grab a copy of the DVD. The boys who made it deserve our support.


The Tunnel is available now on DVD and VOD.


Bel Delia is in this, and this picture of her is just awesome..