FILM REVIEW: The Pact (2012)

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What a movie this was! I have to say I really enjoyed it. The Pact is about Annie (Caity Lotz) going back to her childhood home after the disappearance of her sister and the death of her mother. From the start, things are definitely not right in the house, and that’s what the movie explores.

The Plot: I really like the plot of this one because it kept me on edge. I wanted to know what was going to happen. There was so much secrecy in Annie’s family, and I wanted to know just how disturbed her mother was. It’s pretty great watching everything unravel before you in the 89 minutes of the movie. It’s a mystery/thriller/ horror movie that is definitely worth watching!

The Characters: If I had to pick a negative aspect of this movie, it would definitely be the characters. The movie focused a lot more on the plot, and therefore, I felt as though the characters were somewhat neglected. However, you still rooted for the main character. She wasn’t unlikable which was definitely a plus. Overall, the characters were okay. Caity Lotz’s acting was pretty solid considering how little information we’re given on her character.

The Horror: This movie wastes no time in getting the ball rolling. From the first scene, we’re thrown right into creepiness. You’re on edge for a lot of the time, and the ominous music definitely does not help the situation. Overall, it was pretty freaky. The scariest moment, hands down, are the parts with the ghost. It’s so chilling and creepy and absolutely brilliant!

I would definitely recommend this one. The whole movie was very well done. The ending didn’t completely make sense to me, but overall, it was great and worth watching. Tell me what you guys think about this one!

FILM REVIEW: Evil Dead (2013)

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I haven’t reviewed any horror films in a while, and I’ve been itching to do one on this movie. As you all probably know, this is a remake of the cult classic Evil Dead  which was directed and written by Sam Raimi. If there’s anything you should know about me, it’s that I love Evil Dead. I love everything about it – from the cheesy acting to the creepy but low budget makeup. As you can imagine, when I heard they were remaking it, I was extremely wary. However, as I sat in the cinema watching it, I was surprised to find that I didn’t hate it. I didn’t love it – the original will always have a place in my heart – but I did like it, and I would recommend it to anyone. Having said that, let’s get this review on the road.

The Plot. Yes, it was the same old plot – group of friends in a cabin, unleashing  an evil spirit upon them through reciting the words in The Book of the Dead. However, it should be said that there are clear differences between the two. There is definitely more of a back story to this one. You have emotionally vulnerable Mia (Jane Levy), who has a drug addiction that she wants to beat. What do they decide to do? Pack up and spend the weekend in a terribly creepy cabin and wait it out cold turkey is what. I liked the fact that they decided to expand on the original storyline, so that was a plus for me. Overall, the plot was pretty good and definitely made way for some great tension between the characters.

The Characters. Speaking of tensions, there’s some pretty heavy ones between Mia and her brother, David (Shiloh Fernandez), and you can tell from the beginning. I really like the whole dynamic between the two siblings. It was certainly portrayed better than in the original, I have to admit. I also liked how the two other characters did play quite a big role in the movie. They weren’t just there for the sole purpose of having them become infected and possessed as I had thought while watching the original. However, the relationship that was lacking was between David and his girlfriend. She was pretty useless in the whole movie which was pretty disappointing. I couldn’t help but remember Bruce Campbell and Betsy Baker’s cute and weird staring game (thumbs up if you know what I’m talking about).

The Horror. I think this is where I was somewhat disappointed. Sure, the makeup and CG was a step-up quality-wise, but I wasn’t wowed. I expected more. It wasn’t groundbreaking and felt unoriginal to me. With the original, I understood that it was a while ago, and to be honest, I think I was more freaked out watching the original than this remake. It did have some scary parts and creepy moments, that’s for sure, but overall I wasn’t up that night hiding under my blankets with the nightlight on. However, I do have to admit that I absolutely loved the end scene. It was so perfect. The blood, the chase, and Mia being absolutely kickass. Overall, the horror wasn’t on par with my expectation, but it did have its moments that are definitely worth checking out.

So would I recommend this one? Absolutely! It’s not going to be the most amazing horror movie you’ve ever seen, and it certainly won’t be “the most terrifying film you will ever experience,”  but it is definitely worth checking out if only to spot all the little references made to the original. I think the final bonus scene also makes up for any ill feelings towards this movie! If you haven’t watched the original, please do so before watching this one. I think it’s a lot more fun that way. Anyway, I’d love to hear what you guys thought about this one. Don’t forget to leave your comments!

Live long and prosper guys!

Catching Fire (Film) Review

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It’s almost two in the morning, I’ve got a cup of coffee in my hand, and I’m ready to roll. Alright, I’ll start of this review by making a confession. I’ve never read any of the Hunger Games Series. That’s right. This book-obsessed geek has never read any of them. Not a single one, but you know what? I think that that makes me a little bit less biased towards the movie. I had no expectations going into the movie theater. Actually, that’s not true. My expectations were pretty low after the first movie. I wasn’t expecting this movie to be any different in terms of its effect on me, but I was proven wrong. I really liked this movie. Here’s why:

The whole movie was well done. The plot was great, and I have Suzanne Collins to thank for that aspect. For those of you who have never read the Hunger Games Series either, let me give you a quick  synopsis. The story is set after Katniss Everdeen, played by the lovely Jennifer Lawrence, and Peeta Mellark, played by Josh Hutcherson, return home, victorious from the Hunger Games. Katniss has become a beacon of hope to all the districts, and the Capitol is most certainly not happy. The next Hunger Games consists of victors fighting it out in the arena. I really have to say that the film did a brilliant job in bringing this story to life. Even though I’ve never read the books, I wasn’t lost and I was completely engaged throughout the movie. You need not have read the books to enjoy this jewel.

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The acting was pretty fantastic this time around. With the first movie, I didn’t connect with Katniss at all, but Jennifer Lawrence did a magnificent job in Catching Fire. I was absolutely heartbroken with her when she is separated from her sister, and I teared up at the scene where she is honoring Rue. Her performance was absolutely brilliant. Another actor that I would like to mention is the handsome Sam Claflin (who you may recognize from Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides) who played Finnick Odair in this movie. His best scene hands down is when he’s shouting after Mags. Completely heartbreaking!

The soundtrack was solid like in the first movie. It wasn’t groundbreaking, but it was beautiful and added the right atmosphere to the movie. And as to be expected from the first movie, the costume designs were stunning.The scenery was also amazing. The world Suzanne Collins made is portrayed magnificently in the movie.  It felt real and yet unreal at the same time. There are some parts where I can see it being in the real world while others felt like a dream. During this movie, I felt as if I were truly transported into the world of Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.

Overall, I really liked this movie. It just may be the motivator I need to go and read the whole series. In any case, I’m really looking forward to seeing the next installment!

Live long and prosper guys!

Sinister (2012 film) Review

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I have no words to describe how much I loved this movie. It was horrifyingly fantastic. Over the recent years, few movies have really stuck with me. This movie is definitely one of them. Let me tell you why.

I liked the whole premise of the movie. When I saw the bodies hanging from the tree in the beginning of this movie, I knew it was going to be one heck of a journey, and boy was it. Sinister is about true crime writer Ellison Oswalt played by Ethan Hawke moving his family into his next big project – the house of where a mass murder and kidnapping took place. After moving in, Ellison finds a box of seemingly normal family tapes in the attic. However, the tapes turn out to be of various mass murders that have taken place – all of which somehow relates to the symbol for the pagan deity, Bughuul. Not long after watching the tapes, Ellison sees Bughuul in them, and he can’t seem to get away from “Mr. Boogie.” The movie does a great job of telling us the story. It didn’t seem rushed at all, and I really liked the characters because of that. I got to know them more, and I was rooting for them so badly. The whole plot was definitely very well thought out.

The tapes bring me to my next point. This movie was pretty scary, and the tapes were one of the things I loved most about this movie. They were so horribly ironic in their naming (Eg. BBQ ’79, Pool Party ’66, etc.), and it was just great. Bughuul, himself, is pretty creepy. It’s a simple design, but it is very effective. I can just see him standing there in the bushes while I walk alone at night. After watching this movie, I was afraid to see him in my bedroom. The soundtrack was a beautiful addition to this haunting movie. It was just perfect for the mood of it all. I was on my toes the entire time, and I felt the eerie sensation I was being watched because of the atmosphere. I loved every moment of it.

“Once you see him, nothing can save you.”

I’m very interested in the the idea of being cursed by seeing things. It’s totally freaky.That’s why I really like The Grudge, The Ring, and other movies with similar themes. This movie is one of them, and the thought of that is absolutely terrifying to me. I can’t imagine what I’d do if I were to be haunted. Seeing movies like this really gives me the chills. I always feel like I’m going to be cursed like the characters just by watching the movie.

So, is this movie worth watching? Yes. It’s one of the better horror movies to be released recently, and I totally recommend it. It’s just absolutely fantastic. It’s a great movie to add to any horror junkie’s collection.

Darkroom (2013 film) Review

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I’m honestly speechless with this movie and not in a good way. It was all just.. okay. The acting was okay. The characters were okay. The story was okay. The effects were okay. That’s not what you want the audiences to think as a director, and that’s most certainly not what we want to see.

The only reason I bothered to watch this movie is because it was on instant watch on Netflix. I hoped, against all odds, that it would be a diamond in the rough. It wasn’t even close. This movie was a missed opportunity. The plot was not overly original, but it could have been something. It had the potential to show us a different side of this already seen idea, and it just didn’t deliver.

The movie is about a girl named Michelle, played by Kaylee DeFer, who was recently released from a mental facility after killing her friends in a drunk driving accident before landing a job run by three psychotic siblings who want to “purify” her through, surprise surprise, torture with sharp things from Home Depot. So, the film is basically a girl trapped by these three siblings (one dominant male, one domineering female, and one submissive male), in a creepy room. It could have been some serious psychological outlook on the human psyche and limitations, but instead, the audience gets a couple of amateur gore scenes and characters who you don’t particularly care for. I honestly couldn’t have cared less what happened to the characters. I didn’t connect with any of them. The siblings were not creepy at all. I think the only creepy scene in the whole movie is when Michelle sees her dead friend, but that’s about it.

So, if you’re bored on a Wednesday afternoon or alone on a Friday night, skip this title, and just go watch Evil Dead or The Exorcist or something. It isn’t worth your time.

The Conjuring Review

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Alright, guys. A lot of movies have come out in the recent years about possessions and demons and whatnot, but I have to say that this one was actually pretty good. Here’s why:

True story. Yes, I know that the movie changed some things around and might have exaggerated some, but come on. You can’t tell me that you weren’t just the tiniest bit freaked out when you found out this movie was based on real events. It’s based on the actual hauntings experienced by the Perron family, and the consequent investigations made by the famous paranormal investigators, Ed and Lorraine Warren played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga respectively. According to the movie, the house belonged to an accused witch, Bathsheba, who sacrificed her child to the devil, cursing anyone who tried to take her land. However, the real truth is that no one really knows for sure whether this is true or not. If you don’t like inaccuracies, this may not be the movie for you, but if you don’t particularly care, then by all means, watch it.

The acting. I thought the whole cast did a pretty convincing job, and at times when there was a lot of suspense, I was right there with the characters, scared for my life. There were a lot of younger characters in this movie because of the many daughters in the Perron family, but I thought they did a fantastic job with this movie, so kudos to them. I thought Joey King, in particular, who you might recognize from Ramona and Beezus, did a brilliant job especially. Finally, I love Vera Farmiga, so that’s a plus for me. I can’t wait to see more from her.

The horror. I will say that there were some cheap jump scares here and there, but the whole movie is brilliantly done and not overly-cliched. Sure, it has its fair share of overused tropes, but that’s to be expected in a genre as well covered as demonic possession. The makeup was pretty freaky. The night I watched it, I could have sworn I heard clapping in the distance… or maybe it’s just my paranoia. In any case, the movie had me on my toes for a majority of the time, waiting for what I know is coming, but when it did come, I was still scared anyway. The Annabelle doll they used in the movie was pretty creepy. I’d love to buy one and scare my friends with it some time by putting it in their rooms.

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Geez, imagine waking up to that in your room. There wasn’t much gore. The movie instead relied on creepy atmosphere and horrifying scenes.

Was this movie groundbreaking? Probably not. Is it still worth watching? Absolutely. It’s a great movie to watch on a rainy and gloomy day when the atmosphere is just right. I highly recommend it.

As an afterword, I’d like to point out that I believe Lorraine Warren conducts tours at her house. Oh, I’d love to see that!