Sunday, October 1, 2017

George A. Romero's Night of the Living Dead

Hey Spooks! Like I said before, I just couldn't end Zombie month with a bunch of zombie movies that were not up to par. So, I racked my brain trying to think of a movie that would give it some spice and dignity. Then it finally hit me...how could I watch a months worth of zombie movies without seeing at least one that was by the Godfather of zombie movies?! Now, granted this one isn't the first, but the remake. But he did do the screenplay and was a producer. So let's give a great big shout out to the master of zombie's, George A. Romero and the 1990 remake of Night Of The Living Dead.

We are first introduced to Barbara and her brother who are visiting their mothers grave. While there, the two are suddenly attacked by an undead man. During the struggle Barbara's brother is killed and she herself flee's the scene. She takes shelter in a farmhouse, where she run's into some more zombies. Another survivor name Ben, soon shows up and helps her dispose of the undead. While devising a plan to board up the house, they find that there are other survivors who have hidden themselves in the basement. One of them is the cousin of the former owner, Tom, his girlfriend Judy Rose, and Harry Cooper and his wife and daughter. Ben and Barbara are told that the little girl is sick, and Cooper keeps suggesting that they all get back into the basement until help arrives. Ben believes the basement to be a death trap and that they would be better off fortifying the house where they have escape options. The small group of strangers soon figure out how to better defend themselves if they are ever to escape the hoard of living dead heading for them.

This is how its done people! This movie is awesome. I will admit...I haven't seen the original. I know, blasphemy. But I have seen bits and pieces of it and I get the concept. One thing I got to point out is I love the fact that they changed Barbara's character from a helpless and, dare I say pathetic character, to the arse kicking, zombie killing woman that she is in this movie. Granted in the beginning she is obviously traumatized and needs a small smack in the face to snap her out of it. But she show's that she can fight if she need's to (as the character of Ben points out). She is also one of the stronger character's other than Ben. And Ben? Oh man is he a go get 'er. I want him on my zombie team. And the jerk character. Oh man. You just wonder how karma is gonna get back at him, and when it does its satisfying. Now, I will admit that while watching this movie, I couldn't help but point out all the mistakes the characters were making. Like, I was thinking, why don't you guys just go upstairs? Why not look for that infamous attic and hid in there? But as it was from the 90's and I own the Zombie Survival Guide, its easy to point out those things.You also get a bit of time with the zombies. What I mean by that is that you see them interacting with the environment that they are in. There is one scene where we are watching a zombie sitting there eating slugs and even in a way, reacting to one another. Its nothing big, but it gives you a sense of how gone these creatures are. And the emotional scenes are just right. You can feel the break down and frustration. You can feel them being human. And that makes it more real and even more frightening.

Overall, I can't recommend this movie enough. The zombies are great, the characters are just wonderful, and the ending makes you think. You are zoned in on everything that is going on and even if you know what's going to happen, you still stay on board for the ride. And it is a good one. If you ask me, this is a good one to end zombie month on. Also to the spirit of George A. Romero, thank you for the living dead ghouls and movies. You are and will always be the master!

Undead

Hello fellow Spooks. I swear zombie month has zombified my brains. I don't know how I keep finding these hair brain movies. One of these movies seems to of been left behind by our dearly departed founder, and voted sexy corpse of the year, Nick. So I decided to see what type of movie it was other than a zombie flick. I don't know what he was on when he got it but I don't want it. I give you, 'Undead'.

Set in Australia, in a small town called Berkley, we are given a hasty introduction to our characters. Each one with t he personality and acting skills that make you want to jab a syringe in your eye cause it would be less painful. Anywho, a small meteor shower hits the town causing anyone who has been hit by these space rocks to become zombies. One of our characters, after witnessing some zombie violence, finds herself at an old weapons and fishing store where the town outcast resides and seems to be prepared for this coming zombie apocalypse. They are joined with a pregnant girl (who has grudge against our first leading lady) and her baby daddy, as well as an uptight Constable and his rookie partner. Together, this rag tag squad must fight their way through the legion of the undead and learn that not only is it the zombies that they have to worry about, but also a possible danger from beyond the stars. I'm talking aliens people.

You know, there are some things that go together like, peanut butter and jelly, lycans and vampires. But zombies and aliens? I kind of don't think so. Sure you can have horror and sci-fi mix and make some great flicks. You can also put in some ridiculousness in to make it more comical. But it has to be a smart type of ridiculousness. A perfect example is Shaun of the Dead. That movie gave us a zombie apocalypse with just a couple of average Joe's who fight off zombies while giving us some great humor in the process, as well as scenes that gave you some strong emotions. It had great actors and a great script. You could also tell that it was suppose to be a comedy set in a horror theme. It was also indicated by the trailer. In Undead, the trailer is so misleading. It makes you think that its going to be a serious zombie flick. When you see it, you are blind sided by the hokey acting, over the top gore, and I hate to say, poor delivery of comedy and drama. Some of the parts in the movie just boggled me. One of the characters punches a zombie fish. A zombie fish! You'd think I'd laugh at that but I was so confused as to what was going on that I sat there just dumbfounded. There was one scene where I genuinely laughed. One point gained movie.

As you may have guessed by my rant, I wasn't fond of this movie and don't recommend it. The story is everywhere, you don't care about the characters situation, and the acting is just too over the top for me. Granted there are some places where you get what the emotion is, and it matches the situation. If this movie was trying to be a comedy, it failed. If it was suppose to be serious, it failed that too. Watch it yourself if ya want to, I ain't your mom. But I can't let zombie month end like this. We need something or someone who can bring life to this corpse of a horror genre. A movie that can bring us the true horror of zombies. Maybe even the master of zombies....I dare say, George A Romero?

Sunday, September 17, 2017

GallowWalkers

Hello fellow spooks. Tell me, what defines a zombie flick? Is it the dead walking upright. Is it the consumption of human flesh? Head shots? That's what seems to come to mind when we think of zombie flicks. But what if that flick that advertises or is said to have zombies in it, doesn't exactly deliver? Well let me tell you a tale of the GallowWalkers.

We are first introduced to our main character, Aman. who gives us a narrative into his life. We learn that he is getting revenge on a gang that had assaulted his lover. The twist is however, that he had already killed them. Only, because of a curse set upon him, anyone he kills comes back to life and the only way to kill them again is a head shot. He recruits a young man named...*sigh* Fabulos (I swear I'm not making that up. Google it), Anyways, he recruits Fabulos to aid him in his revenge in this supernatural western, to finish the job and put the gang back into the grave.

Dude...I got to say this...flavored false advertising! I was expecting zombies. Zom-beeezzz. Not cursed people who can't die cause some other cursed person kills them. Now its not the movie itself that says anything about it having zombies in it. On some sites, they are the ones who say this is categorized as a zombie flick. Netflix being one of them. Just type in 'Zombie movies' and this one will pop up. That's neither here or there. Onward. The movie had a decent idea, but it was blown out of its skull. You'd think a western with the living dead would be a neat story. But this one, no. It can't seem to focus on one thing at a time. You are introduced to so many different stories and random characters that you can't figure out what the blood and gore is going on. And you have so many questions that are not answered. Questions like: Why did Aman recruit this Fabulos dude? We don't get told how the gallow walkers came to be known or how they got their name, just that they are known. And who the bloody mess are these bleach blonde goobers who seem to live in this cult we see for like a good 10 minutes???? Go home movie, your drunk.

I really don't recommend this film. I kind of had high hopes for it. It had Wesley Snipes and he is usually pretty good. I mean, how could Blade disappoint? The one cool thing about these, *ahem*, zombies, is that in order to maintain their bodies, they need to take the flesh of the living and mold it onto their bodies to keep from looking like the walking corpses they are. Hey, that's kind of zombie-ish. You win this round bad movie. Its like a beauty treatment. We can call it...'Fresh Face'. Skin care for zombies. Anyways, see it, don't see it. If you have over an hour to kill go ahead. Make the call yourself. Me, I'm gonna go and see if I could sell this 'Fresh Face' idea. Excuse me Mr. Zombie, you care to sample our facial care product, 'Fresh Face'. Ummm, sir, you don't eat it you put it on your face... you know what, never mind.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

What We Become

Hey there lovers of spookiness. Well, we are continuing our month of theme horror, that being
zombie month! Our next flesh eating movie comes all the way from the land of Denmark. Let's discover what happens when a nice little neighborhood is threatened with the prospect of ravenous zombies.

In the little town of Sorgenfri, a family of four and their neighborhood are swept from the sweet laid back world they are use to and thrown into a pit of chaos. A virus has begun to spread and though they doubt the severity of it, they are suddenly put under quarantine by the army. Their houses are covered in overgrown trash bags, and are given food and water rations to live on. The teen boy, Gustav, having the hots for the neighbor girl is concerned about her well being after seeing the military take a family member of hers away. Soon, the outbreak that seems to be under a certain amount of control, is let loose and with flesh hungry zombies at their door step, the family must try and survive the bloody horror.

Selfish and stupid acts that happen when zombies attack. That's one of the things I experienced while watching this. You get a thrill watching as the army guys doing the quarantine keeps people on a need to know basis, and when you see the act that makes all hell break loose, you go bonkers. Seriously, when I watched this I so wanted to smack a dead body. Its crazy and in a way frustrating. While the individual had good meaning behind their act, they failed to see everything. Its also frustrating when you see the many mistakes that the family makes. Example: after everything goes array, the little girl, Maj, leaves the house and no one notices! They noticed when Gustav got out in the middle of the night, but in broad daylight they don't see that the one who needs the most protection is gone??? Ya'll be insane.

Aside from the human part of this movie, I think it was good. The characters were not the usual rise above and become fighters that you usually see. They made mistakes and had the privilege to just be regular people who were put into a situation that no one is really prepared for. I got to give them that. It also showed the ugly side of people. How we are capable of not only great care and charity, but also very self centered acts and poor decision making. I really do recommend this for your zombie watching pleasure. Now lets update that zombie outbreak kit...water, food, blunt objects, lighter, and fireworks. Zombies love a good firework show.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Train to Busan

Hi there spooky and kooky ones. Riddle me this...what happens when a zombie outbreak happens and your on a train? Well the answer is in this epic zombie flick straight from the beautiful lands of South Korea. Let us dive into zombie month with the flick, Train to Busan.

We are first introduced to the first victim of the up and coming doom...a deer. Seriously. I hate spoilers too, but watch it and you will see. Anyways, we are then introduced to our main character, Seok-woo, a fund manager who is extremely dedicated to his work. We are also introduced to his little girl Su-an, whose only wish is that her father would show her some attention and not work so much. On Su-an's birthday, her only wish to go see her mother who lives in Busan. Seok-woo agrees and accompanies her. While on the train, Su-an notices a sudden violent attack on a train worker while the train is departing. Soon an outbreak of fast running zombies accords and soon what was once a pleasant train ride becomes a fight for survival as chaos reigns in both the outside world and the train.

Zombie train. That's what this would of been titled I bet here in the states. But you can't beat this movie no matter what the title. It is that awesome. The zombies in this are like the ones in World War Z. Fast and very animal like. Which makes them even more freaky. And once your bitten, there is no wait time like, 30 minutes till you become sir bites-a-lot. No, you start shifting in less than a minute. Heck, the zombies are unable to enjoy the feast since you turn so quickly. The characters are your typical ones you get in just about every horror movie, but they are so well played in this.You got the self centered guy who redeems himself, you got the guy who is just naturally a hero, the coward, the major asshole, and the herd of people who act out of primal fear. Of course in this you know who the real asshole is and your just shouting, 'kill that prick!' In all honesty this movie really speaks to human nature in a disaster. Your either the savior, the asshole, or the sheep.

This movie is totally on my recommend list. Especially for a zombie flick. You not only get action and good on the edge of your seat thrills, you get to see karma. Watch it and you will know what I'm talking about. Now if your'll excuse me I need to check and see what is the trains emergency protocol if there is a zombie outbreak...what? There is no zombie protocol for the train??? Next thing you'll be telling me is that there isn't one for the planes...there isn't????? Ever heard of preparation???

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Other Side of the Door

Greetings my fellow spooks. I must ask, is it too much to ask that people follow certain rules? Don't touch a hot stove. Look both ways before you cross. And don't open doors to the land of the dead. Well here is a movie that shows why some doors should stay locked, and the key destroyed, or launched into space.

In Mumbai India, after a tragic accident, Maria is consumed with grief as the accident claimed the life of her son Oliver. She is also overcome with guilt cause during the accident she chose to save her daughter Lucy first before Oliver leaving him to die. After surviving an attempted suicide, her housekeeper, Piki, tells her of a temple where the line between the living and the dead is thin and there, Maria can say one last goodbye to Oliver. Piki give's her instructions. One instruction is that Maria is to never open the door no matter how much Oliver pleads with her. Sure enough, at the temple, Oliver shows up and Maria speaks to him. However, he tells her he has to go. Not wanting him to leave, Maria opens the door and finds he is not there. Unknown to her, she has disturbed the balance between the living and the dead, and what has come home with her is not the sweet boy she remembers, but a dark version of Oliver.

This movie had some potential, that was drowned out by missing information. There are numerous examples. One being the Shamans that seem to pop up everywhere. We are given a short but informal fact about them. BUT, we are not given information as to why they are doing various things. One scene is that they approach Maria and put ash on her face. There is no explanation for it. No reason. Just, 'here is some ash on your face. Have a nice day'. I would of loved to hear a reason for that. Or how about what they are chanting? Or why is every plant dying? As you watch the movie it starts to make sense, but a little bit of fill in the gaps would be nice. Plus, this movie is basing the haunting on the Hindu beliefs. We get such a small taste of it, that we are left in the dark. And some things are just never explained.

I got mixed feelings about this movie. On one hand its just your average scares and story of ghosts. But on the other hand, with the culture twist added, it makes it more interesting. True it borrows some familiar ghost story layouts, but on a small level, it works. Aside from that, I wouldn't say don't watch this movie, but I wouldn't say you have got to watch this. Much like the character Oliver, its in limbo. As for the whole door thing, I wouldn't open the door even if the spirit said it had pizza. What spirit? Its a large pepperoni with cheesy stuff crust? And a nice cold soda? And you have choloate cake??? Come on in! Oh crap....

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

We are still here

Children of the night, prepare yourselves for a tale of tragedy, revenge, and ghosts that look like a well done steak. I give you We are still here.

In 1979 Ann and Paul, who have lost their son has moved to a new small town in order to start anew. Once moved in, they begin to have strange occurrences. Pictures breaking, balls bouncing down the stairs. The usual timid start to show that there are spooks in the house. Ann believes its their son Bobby's spirit. Paul, being a skeptic, shrugs it off, believing its just Ann's imagination fueled by her grief. Of course things escalate fast when a repair man is maimed by an apparition. Ann decides to invite her friends May and Jacob, in the hopes that May, who is also a medium, can help get in contact with Bobby's spirit. Soon the small group learns about the truth of their new home, the town, and that the spirits that reside there, are out for blood thirsty revenge.

This movie was just right. I mean sure there were some things that got me a little, befuddled. Example; some of the establishing shots were really long. I mean, ten seconds long. But aside from that, it was good. They didn't take long to get to the spooks, and the suspense before the ghosts did their jump scare was exceptional. Heck, there were times that I was bracing myself for that jump scare. Plus the twist was decent. It was nothing really new. But the story itself was what made it a success.

This is one I would recommend. Its got a good plot, some interesting characters, and the burnt ghosts are nice and crispy...I mean creepy. Like a charbroiled steak...medium rare...with cursed potato salad...now I'm hungry.