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  #61641  
Old 5th August 2023, 10:16 AM
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HERE BEFORE – Andrea Riseborough plays a woman, struggling with the aftermath of her daughter’s death, who finds that her little new neighbour knows one or two things she wouldn’t expect. There’s a sense in which ‘Here Before’ plays with its viewer at first, appearing by turns a drama about grief, a psychological thriller, and a ghost story. The way it finally lays its cards on the table is a little disappointing, but until then it’s a mesmerising and haunting work, heavy with an oblique atmosphere that made me wonder what Lynne Ramsay re-doing ‘Don’t Look Now’ on an Irish housing estate would play like. Flawed at the end there maybe, but otherwise highly recommended.

TWELVE HOUR SHIFT – Black comedy set in a hospital where organ donation doubles as a nice little side hustle. Angela Bettis is great as the perma-scowling nurse Mandy, whose kidney-harvesting schemes are upskittled by the antics of dopey psychopath Regina, an equally great Chloe Farnworth. There’s a sardonic edge to it all that prevents too much silliness creeping in, even if I was expecting someone to do a comedy basic and slip up on an errant liver or something… that never happens, but I didn’t feel short changed, ’12 Hour Shift’ is a good laugh and worth a watch.

CHILDREN SHOULDN’T PLAY WITH DEAD THINGS – Before the rightly feted ‘Deathdream’, Bob Clark and Alan Ormsby teamed up for CSPWDT, one of my all-time grindhouse faves. It’s about a theatre troupe who travel to an island to mess around in a graveyard, only to find that their mock-rituals bite them on the collective arse in the form of the risen dead. It’s talky, but I love all the snide rat-a-tat-tat, with Ormsby in fine fettle as a particularly foul thesp whose ego spells downfall for all present. The zombie bits are just stellar even now, soundtracked by crazed electronic bleating and full of lingeringly photographed ghoul make-up that looks very EC. But the bit the stays with me the most is the mid-section, where they disinter and humiliate the corpse known as Orville. It’s actually fairly uncomfortable, and there’s an air, perhaps present through the rest of the film too, of the counterculture looking itself in the mirror as it slowly falls apart.
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  #61642  
Old 5th August 2023, 05:42 PM
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Dawn of the Dead (2004) Directors Cut

Just a shit version of Mallrats with a bit of blood thrown in.

But seriously, almost twenty years on this remains director Zack Snyder's best film. It's a reworking of George A Romero's 1978 film of the same name and whilst it doesn't have the social comment or satire of that film and it's undead commit what i feel is the ultimate sin of running, it's still a fantastic zombie film.

The gore and make up effects are excellent and extreme with it whilst the cast and acting is far superior to the original with the characters, or some at least, better developed allowing the audience to root for them and in the case of Michael Kelly's tyrant of a security guard, actually change our opinion of and warm to the longer he's on screen.

The film's three leads are uniformly excellent - Sarah Polley, Ving Rhames and Jake Weber - seeing them adapt to survive and come to crucial but hard thought out decisions which practically involve the viewer certainly adds to their appeal.

As well as Snyder, James Gunn is also a huge influence on the film with his well thought out script full of great dialogue. The cinematography is excellent especially long shots which show the world in all it's post apocalyptic glory during an awesome opening ten minutes.

Dawn of the Dead
is a genuine horror blockbuster the likes of which we do not see nowadays and having not seen it for years last night's Blu-ray viewing was fantastic, tense entertainment.
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  #61643  
Old 5th August 2023, 09:33 PM
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Nightmare Cinema. 2018.

A anthology of tales about people who venture into a cinema and are shown short stories on how their lives may go.

The Thing In The Woods
(Directed by Alejandro Brugués)
A group of teens head to the woods and become attacked by a strange breed of spiders.

Mirare
(Directed by Joe Dante)
A women goes to private clinic for cosmetic surgery that doesn't go as planned.

Masht
(Directed by Ryûhei Kitamura)
A boarding school run by priest and nuns becomes a target for demons.

The Way To Egress
(Directed by David Slade)
A woman looses touch on reality and doesn't know what is real and what isn't.

Dead
(Directed by Mick Gariss)
A young boy attacked and sent to hospital and fights off evil spirits and a murderer coming to finish the crime.

A decent anthology that actually has a decent star cast with Mickey Rourke as the Projectionist who shows the audience how their lives may end. There is a hint of Creepshow soundtrack at the start which gives the film a decent touch. The special and visual effects are decent and a segment gives it nightmarish effect. One to check out.

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  #61644  
Old 5th August 2023, 09:34 PM
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Chopping Mall. A bunch of teens partying in a mall after hours get taken on by the homicidally out of control new security bots. I saw this about 5 years ago and thought it sucked but for some reason gave it another go last night and actually kinda liked it (I guess the superior PQ on this version helped, and/or maybe I just wasn't in the mood for camp last time ). It's very silly but fun, it's got Kelli Maroney from Night of the Comet and The Zero Boys and at an hour and 20 doesn't outstay it's welcome. And it also knows exactly what kind of movie it is.
"I guess I'm just not used to running around a mall in the middle of the night being chased by killer robots."
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  #61645  
Old 5th August 2023, 10:34 PM
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The Wild One (1953)

This provocative movie about a biker gang - The Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - who ride into a small town and cause chaos with fatal results was banned in Britain for fourteen years even if seventy years later we might wonder what for.

The film which made Marlon Brando, turning him from a rising star to cultural icon, from the classic image of him resting on his motorbike to it's cool as f*ck dialogue - one girl asks Brando "Hey, Johnny, what are you rebelling against?" to which he replies "What've you got?". The Wild One was the first and the best of the 'Motorcyle gang' genre.

It's not what you'd call a perfect film. Although it gave Brando the legendary status he delivers a better performance in the following years On the Waterfront which is a superior film all round. Co-star Lee Marvin, head of the rival Beetles gang seems too old for the part and the back projection as Brando rides the highways is terrible and not helped by the image quality of Blu-ray.

However it also gets a lot right. The horror of a small town invaded by thugs, the lynch mob mentality as the town strikes back as the lawman is ineffective and the total desperation and restlessness of everyone living in a country not long out of depression and war time.

Shot in crisp black and white, the film looks stunning on the Indicator Blu-ray with the disc host to a wealth of additional material.
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  #61646  
Old 6th August 2023, 01:02 PM
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The Deadly Bees (1966)

An ailing starlet is sent to a remote island to recover. Little does she know she is about to stumble into a hive of horror! A neighboring bee keeper has discovered "the smell of fear" and is using it to control a lethal swarm of killer bees which carry out his evil deeds.

The US publicity blurb for The Deadly Bees calls it "Late night drive-in fare at its campy best". In truth the film is much more than that. Despite the special effects at times leaving a lot to be desired, the bee attacks in places look terrible and are often just superimposed over other images. However this isn't a major US studio production this is from the small British company Amicus and i think they've done a terrific job with it.

The film was made on a few simple indoor and outdoor sets and they all look great. The tight screenplay by Robert Bloch and Anthony Marriott hasn't much flab to it and moves along quickly, some nice dialogue taking place in between the numerous bee attacks.

The three main leads - Suzanna Leigh, Frank Finlay, Guy Doleman - all work well and come across as strong believable characters. Finlay drips with seedy menace as he strolls about in his cardigan, you just know he's the villain from his first scenes. Leigh as our heroine looks beautiful yet vulnerable. Her scenes in a white slip being menaced by the bees in the bathroom were used heavily in the films publicity to imply a sleazier side to the film than it actually had. Its always great to see Michael Ripper in a movie, especially one such as this where he comes out from behind the bar and has a pivotal role in the films flaming conclusion. There's even time for an on stage appearance TOTP style from The Byrds during the opening few minutes. Byrds and bees? I thought it was an in-joke anyway.

A largely successful killer bee film years before Hollywood got in on the act.

As with all the Amicus Blu's i've seen from various companies the image quality isn't up there with Hammer when it comes to HD.
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  #61647  
Old 6th August 2023, 05:40 PM
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Red Rock West (1993)

A year before directing the excellent neo-noir The Last Seduction John Dahl made this equally good example which stars Nicolas Cage, Dennis Hopper, Lara Flynn Boyle and JT Walsh.

It's a beautifully twisty desert town set thriller in which Cage's drifter is mistaken for a hit man hired by Walsh to kill his own wife (Boyle). Taking the money Cage informs Boyle of her husbands plan and she pays him double to kill Walsh. Cage then decides to do a runner with the money killing nobody in the process, then the real hit man (Hopper) turns up.

This is a brilliant little gem of a movie. There's a sneaky streak of black comedy throughout and plot devices you won't see coming. The four main cast members are all at the top of their game and in Cage's case it was one of the films that made him a 90's superstar. Dahl directs with the cunning of a fox throwing in coincidences that seem unreal but also perfectly understandable in turn creating a devilish, gripping and fascinating slice of modern noir.

I highly recommend Red Rock West. The Blu-ray from Plan B is a delight, plenty of extras and it comes with a repro of the movie poster, 36 page full colour booklet with lots of photos and a slip case.
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  #61648  
Old 6th August 2023, 07:55 PM
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Commando Fury (1986, Chester Wang)

A Ho WIP flick then, ignore the title etc.
Not the usual load of cut and paste explosions and kicking ahem, quite grim in places, though the framing did mean a lot of it is "off screen" ahem. An oddity.
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  #61649  
Old 6th August 2023, 07:56 PM
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The Sand. 2015.

A group of party teens at a beach become stranded when something carnivous is attacking them.

A somewhat homage to a 50s B science fiction/ horror with some unknown actors and low budget that does have good gore moments but add in some CGI graphics that may be laughable.. There is some tense moments built in while two teens try to get to into the boot of the car while avoiding the sand. Like a few monster movies we see part of the creature then at the end we see more of it. This isn't great but for the acting it's not too bad.

MV5BMTU3NzAzMDA0OF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwNTMzMDIyNDE@._V1_FMjpg_UX1000_.jpg
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  #61650  
Old 6th August 2023, 10:02 PM
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Another 48 HRS

When Nick Nolte is framed for Murder, he again has to gain the assistance from Eddie Murphy, who still hasn't forgiven him for not letting him have his money. There is also a connection from the 1st Film's villains also. This Movie isn't bad, but I prefer the original.

Cutting Edge

When a Ice Hockey Player is injured, he is teamed with a demanding Figure Skater, who has trouble keeping partners. Obviously this odd couple finally get along to go for Olympic Gold. This is a 1992 Movie and it's one of those Films that I remember from that time period, but like many other Films, it's been mostly forgotten about but it's enjoyable.

Chained Heat

A WIP Flick in which Prisoners are abused and the Warden and Guards are crooked. If you've seen one of these types of Films before, then you know what to expect but it's definitely one of the better ones of this particular genre.
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