Last Update 10/13/19

 

The Curse of Halloween Jack (2019)

I confess up front that I stopped watching this after ten minutes. It hadn't even taken that long to determine that this was crap. The evil satanists consist of an animal rights activist, an anti-Christian activist, an anti-government activist, etc. and they all wear chalky white magic so we know they're bad guys. The town where they conduct their ceremonies had a Halloween massacre, so the mayor has banned all Halloween celebrations - even though that would be both illegal and unenforceable. The narration is awful, the camera work is awful, the premise is insulting. I would rather spend 90 minutes staring at a blank screen. 10/13/19

tsy Bitsy (2018)

This is a decent but seriously flawed movie about a family that runs into trouble with a prehistoric cave spider. It is literally too dark most of the time, and it's hard to follow the story in the first third. Although the acting is competent, none of the characters really appealed to me, not even the kids, so I wasn't much interested in their fate. The mother who is supposed to be grieving because of the loss of a son in an automobile accident is rather blasť about leaving  her two very young children at home, alone, at night, for extended periods of time. They also have strange priorities. The two small kids somehow manage to move in all of the furniture on their own, but the mother doesn't bother with sheets or blankets even though there are paintings on the walls. The kids also do not seem to go to school, ever. The mother is addicted to opioids and never actually shows any affection for the kids. Denise Crosby looks very uncomfortable mouthing inane lines as the sheriff. And if your next door neighbor was just killed by an unknown creature, would you stay next door for the night, with two young kids, each sleeping in a separate room? And if you stun a giant spider, do you just let it sit there to recover or do you make sure it's dead?  10/8/19

Killer High (2018)

A dumber than usual high school reunion menaced by a monster movie, in this case a student transformed because he put on a warthog mask. This is largely played for laughs, but it doesn't really work as comedy either, despite a considerable effort by the female lead. They decide to have it the old school that is in the process of being torn down, except that the power is still on. Lots of running around, stupid jokes, a badly designed monster, and a really, really silly story. 10/6/19

Doom (2005)

This was the first attempt to convert the game to a movie, this one starring the Rock. The plot is pretty much the same, although there's not much plot. Secret base on Mars is infested with demons and a group of marines are sent to investigate. Everything after that is just killing the creatures, mostly zombified versions of the staff. Bad writing, of course. A sergeant is not an "officer." That said, this is generally better than the recent remake. Acting is better, sets are more impressive, dialogue is marginally less stupid. The science is mostly BS. Discipline among the marines is pretty crappy. Occasional events make no clear sense. None of the other Doom creatures except what may be imps are included. Movie makers seem to have missed the boat here, twice. The Rock turns into a villain at the end. 10/5/19

Humanoids from the Deep (1980)

I hadn't seen this cheesy but not awful SF monster movie in about twenty years. Vic Morrow and Doug McClure, both past their prime, star. A coastal town is attacked by creatures from beneath the sea that kill, and sometimes rape, their victims. It's not clear at times that the writers knew whether it was the ocean or just a lake. The most incompetent fishing crew ever make the first contact without knowing what they have in their net. Morrow is a racist villain. McClure is the overweight hero. Lots of silly jump scares. Insipid dialogue. Mediocre acting. Unconvincing special effects. Gratuitous sex and some misogyny. Roger Corman's usual fare. 10/4/19

Childís Play (2019) 

This is a rather unnecessary reboot of what has been a fairly good series about a doll possessed by a demon, which is now a doll reprogrammed by a disgruntled worker. I actually rather liked the original with Brad Dourif as the voice of Chuckee, but now itís Mark Hammill as the voice of Buddi/Chucky. But the doll is different and it just doesnít feel the same. The AI doll takes a dislike to his ownerís motherís boyfriend. Then it begins to act independently. This was actually kind of boring. Predictable, visually disappointing, and derivative. You would think they would at least try to do something different. 10/3/19

Doom Annihilation (2019)

The second attempt to turn the first person shooter game into a movie. The premise is that an experiment at an off Earth base opens a portal to Hell and allows various creatures to cross into our reality. A newly arrived contingent of space marines walks into the unexpected.  The characters are flat but the acting is not actively awful - the dialogue occasionally is. And there is no such as a moon of Mars known as Focus. Nor is there any explanation why a bunch of marines would be sent to the facility, given that there were no enemies to fight - at least not when they were dispatched. And headquarters on Earth was unaware of the emergency entrance? The first half of the movie is more or less shooting the zombies without any of the more impressive creatures from the game. Eventually we see some imps, who are the lowest level and weakest of the actual demons. The protagonist is Joan Dark. Get the pun? Lots of unexplained lapses, confused motivations, implausible events like the protagonist put back in charge of her team following her court martial, and uninspired dialogue. The special effects are just mediocre. The lack of the major Doom creatures will undoubtedly disappoint the game's fans. Absolutely stupid ending.10/2/19

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