Posts Tagged ‘Horror’

BD Review: I Still Know What You Did Last Summer [Blu-ray]

Monday, July 13th, 2009

I  Still Know What You Did Last Summer Blu-Ray Box ArtMovie Info:
Writer: Lois Duncan, Trey Callaway
Director: Danny Cannon
Cast: Jennifer Love Hewitt, Freddie Prinze Jr., Brandy Norwood, Mekhi Phifer, Muse Watson, Bill Cobbs, Matthew Settle, Jeffrey Combs, Jennifer Esposito, Jack Black
Rating: R
Studio: Sony

Release Info:
Theatrical Release: November 13, 1998
DVD Release Date: July 14, 2009
Online Availability: Amazon for $14.99

I Still Know What You Did Last Summer is not a screamfest, but it is goofy enough with decent acting to make a perfect, fun film during a date night.”

Once upon a time there was a man who wrote Scream. It became a huge success. Then, he sold an earlier script of his called I Know What you Did Last Summer. He’s not the guy who wrote this movie, but without him, I Still Know What You Did Last Summer would not exist. Whether you want to thank him or not for this remains to be seen.

Around this time, Jennifer Love Hewitt was all the rage. The first film, I Know What You Did Last Summer featured Love Hewitt, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Freddie Prinze Jr. (Mr. Sarah Michelle Gellar), Ryan Phillipe, Bridgette Wilson, Anne Heche, and Johnny Galecki. I recognize every single name, and these characters made the movie a viable horror flick. Well, I Still Know What You Did Last Summer features some notable names besides Prinze Jr. and Love Hewitt, who return, but I can’t say this movie is credible as a horror film.

I Still Know What You Did Last Summer features Brandy, Mekhi Phifer, Matthew Settle (Rufus from Gossip Girl), and guest starring appearances by Jack Black (with dreads – he rocks!), Jennifer Esposito (Samantha Who’s best friend), and Bill Cobbs. This means the acting is pretty good. This isn’t one of those horror flicks that make you giggle like a school boy (or girl) from the sheer cheesiness of the acting. Instead, you’ll giggle at the sheer cheesiness of the plot.

What is it with the evildoers in horror movies not dying? Ben Willis is a modern day Michael Myers when it comes to the bad guy not dying. He was thrown overboard how many times? He had his hand cut off (the one with the hook), and he was shot multiple times. This dude doesn’t die. I get it with Freddy and Jason. They’re kind of like other worldy beings, but Ben Willis (much like Michael Myers) is just a human guy who has this evil hatred consuming him. I guess that kind of thing guarantees immortality in horror.

In the end, what this movie offers is fun. You can’t take I Still Know What You Did Last Summer seriously because it isn’t the type of film that should be taken seriously. It’s a fun romp with a horror twist, crazy storytelling and while this isn’t the best horror movie (it’s not even in the middle of the road as far as horror goes), I Still Know What You Did Last Summer is engaging enough to make any date night, friendship based movie night or all around casual viewing worth the watch.

The I Still Know What You Did Last Summer Plot
Julie James (Jennifer Love Hewitt) is attempting to deal with the aftermath of the first movie. She’s attending school away from her hometown, in Boston, content to get away from the memories of her dead friends. She’s still dating Ray (Freddie Prinze Jr.), but their relationship is strained because he’s working on the docks in their hometown and she’s in Boston.

It’s Spring Break, almost a year after the events of the first movie have occurred, and Julie doesn’t want to return to her hometown to spend it with Ray. Ray mistakes this as rejection, but really she keeps having nightmares about Ben Willis (Muse Watson), the man who almost killed her a year ago. Julie’s best friend, Karla (Brandy Norwood) thinks she should forget about Ray. He’s not in Boston and their cute friend, Will (Matthew Settle) obviously likes her. Julie thinks Will is nice, but Ray is her boyfriend and they’ve been through a lot together, so she isn’t keen to her friend prodding her towards Will.

When Karla wins a trip to Jamaica, after “correctly” answering the capital of Brazil (she said Rio…hmmm), she ends up taking Julie, her boyfriend, Tyrell (Mekhi Phifer), and the guy of Julie’s choice. Julie chooses to take Ray, but when Ray doesn’t show up, Karla invites Will, which is, at first, upsetting to Julie. Little does Julie know Ray has been planning to propose to her, and on his way to surprise her (and go on the trip with her) he is attacked. While Ray’s friend is murdered, Ray manages to escape, though he ends up in the hospital, muttering something about a man with a hook.

When the foursome arrives in the Caribbean, they soon learn that it is storm season on the secluded island. The resort is dead, for the most part, and their hotel is off the mainland, so the area is pretty much empty of residents. The only people on the island are Mr. Brooks (Jeffrey Combs), the hotel manager, local pothead, Titus Telesco (Jack Black), the hotel bartender, Nancy (Jennifer Esposito), and Estes (Bill Cobbs), the hotel porter/bell hop.

Julie is freaked out, especially when people start dying. At first, no one believes her, but when it becomes clear Ben Willis is alive, the group tries to find a way to get off the island, during a hurricane, or face a most certain death. Add in the fact that Ray has escaped from the hospital, on his way to Miami and then Jamaica and you have a somewhat intriguing story, that is bound to make you laugh.

Storyline/Plot: [rating:2]
Replayability: [rating:3]
Acting: [rating:4]
Directing: [rating:2.5]

Audio/Visual:
While the 2.40:1, 1080p, HD picture has improved the quality from the DVD release of I Still Know What You Did Last Summer this transfer isn’t nearly as good as I Know What You Did Last Summer when it came out in Blu-Ray. I found the picture to be a bit soft, personally. While it added to the more horrific scenes, the sharpness could have been better during other moments. There wasn’t any problem with compression errors or edge enhancements, and grain was kept to a minimum. Overall, this transfer is decent, but not spectacular.

The sound transfer for I Still Know is actually pretty good. The main track is presented in English Dolby TrueHD 5.1 Dialogue comes through crisply. The sound effects and music balance one another out. Everything sounds clear and none of the sounds override one another. I didn’t have to worry about volume toggling while watching this movie, and the surround capabilities were pretty awesome. There are two additional tracks included in French Dolby TrueHD 5.1 and Portuguese Dolby TrueHD 5.1. Subtitles are available in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Korean, and Thai.

Visual: [rating:3.5]
Audio: [rating:4.5]

Bonus Features:
There aren’t many bonuses included with this Blu-Ray. What is here, isn’t all that impressive. Here is a list of the bonuses and a brief description of each of the offerings.

“Making Of” Featurette: This featurette is pretty standard. The cast and crew talk about making the movie and the series in general. Nothing too interesting or worth sinking your teeth into in this making of.

“How Do I Deal” by Jennifer Love Hewitt Music Video: I hate when companies include music videos as bonus features. Unless you’re a little kid and this is a Hannah Montana or Lizzie McGuire video, I don’t think anyone finds these music videos enjoyable.

Theatrical Trailer: This is self-explanatory.

BD-Live is Enabled, though I don’t know what is offered since the Blu-Ray hasn’t been released yet.

Finally, this isn’t really a bonus, but I Sill Know What You Did Last Summer offers an all-region Blu-ray Disc for A, B, & C.

Bonus Features: [rating:1.5]

Bottom Line:
You cannot have high expectations when watching I Still Know What You Did Last Summer. This isn’t supposed to be an Academy Award winning film. Hell, it’s not even supposed to be a blockbuster. It’s just some crazy horror movie, that will make you laugh. While I cannot guarantee a purchase on Blu-Ray is right for this title (save money, go DVD), whatever version you get, you’re bound to enjoy this film for what it is.

[rating:overall]

[tags]I Still Know What You Did Last Summer, Blu-Ray, Movie, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Horror, Freddie Prinze Jr., Brandy, Ben Willis, Sequel, Blu-Ray Review, Movie Review[/tags]

LI Reviews Giveaway: Win One of Five Copies of The Haunting in Connecticut on DVD

Thursday, June 25th, 2009

ENTRY RULES:
LI Reviews is proud to be giving away five copies of The Haunting in Connecticut. To enter all you need to do is leave us a comment. Please be sure to only leave one.

COMMENTS ARE MODERATED to avoid spam, so it will not show up right away. People who leave multiple comments will be deleted from the contest altogether. If you do not see your comment within a day then by all means leave another one. Otherwise, do not worry as we accept comments several times a day.

ENTRY GUIDELINES:
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GET AN EXTRA ENTRY:
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DVD Review: Eden Log

Friday, June 5th, 2009

Eden Log DVD Box ArtMovie Info:
Writers: Franck Vestiel, Pierre Bordage
Director: Franck Vestiel
Cast: Clovis Cornillac, Vimala Pons, Zohar Wexler, Sifan Shao, Arben Bajraktaraj, Abdelkader Dahou
Rating: R
Studio: Magnolia Home Entertainment

Release Info:
Theatrical Release: December 26, 2007
DVD Release Date: May 19, 2009
Online Availability: Amazon for $19.99

I’m picky about my horror. If it makes me want to snooze, then I’m out. If the story is so complex I’ll get bored attempting to follow it, I’m out. Adding in Sci Fi elements doesn’t help. I understand this was a first movie for Franck Vestiel and Pierre Bordage, as writers and Vestiel as a director, but that’s no excuse for this movie. I get the point of Eden Log, but in the end, I don’t really care.

What’s sad is that this film starts out well enough. There is quite a bit of action. The visual quality is eerily Sci Fi, even though it was made with handheld cameras. The vision, for Sci Fi/Horror is there, but the full execution is lacking. I just couldn’t get into this movie. Something was missing. I don’t know if I should call it likeability or something else. I just didn’t find this movie all that likable.

When it comes to the acting, the performances were good, in a somewhat synthetic way. What I mean by this is that there was nothing wrong with their technical skills. Clovis Cornillac has to carry the majority of the film on his back, and he did a decent job. The problem I had was with character development. Most of the characters were rather two-dimensional. Since Tolbiac is the primary character, it’s okay if the supporting cast isn’t really easy to connect with, but Tolbiac isn’t the easiest character to empathize with either, especially since he spends most of the first half blacking out before we, as an audience can even get to know him. The connection between character and audience is very important, and in Eden Log it’s just not there.

Besides character development, my biggest problem is with the plot. It was all over the place. The action sequences were decent, but if this was supposed to be an action flick and not a thriller, which is what it appears to be, then the plot needs to be a bit simpler. If this is mean to be a thriller, it shouldn’t rely so much on the neat action sequences to carry the story. Either way, this film just doesn’t work.

The Eden Log Plot
With a dead body next to him, an amnesiac man wakes up in an underground cave. Tolbiac (Clovis Cornillac) is quite disoriented and has no idea who he is, where he is, or how he got here. It isn’t long before he learns about Eden Log, a paradise above ground. In order to get up to the light, prospective residents must make sacrifices. Tolbiac learns this while in a damaged part of his underground environment. He is informed of Eden Log’s existence by digital phantoms, who play the same message they play for the volunteers/workers who make the sacrifices.

Tolbiac also views another message which discusses the workers, their role underground and how their work down under can help the world up above. It’s a mutual exchange, where the worker looks after the ‘plant’ whatever that is. If they do that, they are told the plant will look after them. Eventually, they will be able to go back above ground once they have given all they can give, to the plant.

Tolbiac tries to find a way to get out of this underground hell. He looks for supplies, an exit, some clothes, and other knick knacks that may help him along the way. After finding a light source and new clothes, he finds his way through the underground. Along the way, Tolbiac meets a bearded man, the architect. The man is stuck to the wall by vines, which are now slowly invading his body and Tolbiac is unable to help him. When he hears a noise approaching, the man warns him, he must escape, but the sound is deafening and he passes out, as a result.

After knocking himself out a few more times, and waking up in new environments, he realizes that this is more than just a few dead people and plants taking over bodies. Some of the workers have turned into mutants, Eden Log has lied, quite a bit, there’s this big tree with sap, nearly everyone is infected with this weird mutation, and it all has to do with this crazy, underground power plant. Ultimately, the movie gets really confusing or is it boring? I think it’s both. By the end, I wasn’t exactly in the mood to try and trace this, hyperactive plot.

Storyline/Plot: [rating:2]
Replayability: [rating:1]
Acting: [rating:3]
Directing: [rating:1]

Audio/Visual:
The 1.85:1, anamorphic widescreen transfer was pretty good for this independent flick. The director made good use of the lighting, playing with the levels throughout to set the tone and ambiance for this dark film. The visuals are sharp and detailed, with decent saturation and solid black levels. The color scheme runs a bit on the dark side, with an almost metallic underglow. However, this transfer isn’t 100% free of errors. There are visible compression errors, moments of grain and occasional dirt, but these issues are minor enough to not detract from the overall pleasure you will attain while watching this film, if you happen to like it.

The primary track is English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround. There is also an English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo. The primary track is the 5.1 audio. It sounds pretty good. With this type of sound, the surround aspect of the track is important. The surround sound makes decent use of the speakers. The sound effects and musical soundtrack tend to stick to the back of the speakers while the dialogue is near the front. No volume toggling was needed and the dialogue was easy to hear. The musical tracks fit the tone of the movie well. Both English tracks offer Closed Captioning for the Hearing Impaired and subtitles are available in Spanish.

Visual: [rating:3.5]
Audio: [rating:4]

Bonus Features:
There is only one primary bonus feature for Eden Log. That is the “Making Of” featurette. Clocking in just shy of a full half hour, “Eden Log: To the Surface” is your typical making of movie fare. There are interviews with cast and crew with plenty of back patting (typical of most making ofs since it’s the moment you can actually praise your peers), information on shooting the film, and some behind the scenes footage. This is informative, but it’s a bit dry. You may not really care how the effects for this low budget film were achieved, and frankly, I wouldn’t blame you.

The only other ‘bonus’ is a teaser for the English version of Eden Log This is just over a minute in length.

Bonus Features: [rating:1.5]

Bottom Line:
If you like really complicated, hard to follow, but fun when it comes to the action style horror movies, Eden Log might be right up your alley. This first film effort by Franck Vestiel and Pierre Bordage is a bomb. I don’t recommend buying this DVD. In fact, I don’t even recommend renting it. If you have to rent it for some demented reason, don’t take it too seriously, don’t expect to be scared, and don’t try to get too involved in the plot. You’ll only confuse yourself. Besides, it’s on Netflix, so if you really must watch it, watch it online.

[rating:overall]

[tags]Eden Log, Horror, Mystery, Sci Fi, Thriller, Foreign Language Film, Independent Film, Magnolia, DVD Review, Movie Review[/tags]


DVD Review: The Uninvited

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

The Uninvited DVD Box ArtMovie Info:
Writers: Craig Rosenberg, Doug Miro, Carlo Bernard
Directors: Charles Guard, Thomas Guard
Cast: Emily Browning, Arielle Kebbel, David Strathairn, Elizabeth Banks, Maya Massar, Kevin McNulty, Jesse Moss, Dean Paul Gibson
Rating: PG-13
Studio: Dreamworks

Release Info:
Theatrical Release: January 30, 2009
DVD Release Date: April 28, 2009
Online Availability: Amazon for $17.99

From the very first previews I saw for The Uninvited I knew that I wanted to see it. The movie looked like one of those thrillers you just had to see. I love thriller and horror movies. The movie is an American remake of a 2003 Korean film called A Tale of Two Sisters. Usually, I’m not interested in American remakes of Asian horror, but the previews sucked me in and I knew I had to at least give The Uninvited a chance.

The Uninvited has minor differences from the film on which it is based. That film is based on an Asian story, which is only similar in partial details to either movie. I had heard A Tale of Two Sisters, was good, and if it is better than The Uninvited like many people claim, then I’d love to see it. The Univited was actually pretty good. The acting is what makes the movie, but the plot and its twists are what kept me sitting through it until the end.

I have heard people say they knew the twist before the movie is over. Both Ash & I pride ourselves on being rather clever people. There was more than one twist in this movie, and we didn’t see any of them coming. What’s more is the fact that we don’t go looking for them. Sure, as a reviewer its my job to analyze the movie’s I watch, but it is also my job to try and sit back and enjoy each movie. That’s what we did and we did enjoy The Uninvited.

I’ve liked Emily Browning in the few things I’ve seen her in, in the past…Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate EventsGhost Ship. I hadn’t really thought about her since I saw her in Lemony Snicket. What I’ve realized after watching The Uninvited is that she’s a really talented young actress. I’d never seen Arielle Kebbel in anything, but she’s a very beautiful girl and had nice chemistry with Emily. Her acting is good, as well. Those two carried most of the movie. They had to, due to the nature of the characters, and they succeeded in doing so.

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BD Review: The Uninvited

Sunday, May 3rd, 2009

The Uninvited Blu-ray Box ArtMovie Info:
Writers:Craig Rosenberg, Doug Miro
Director: Chales Guard, Thomas Guard
Cast: Emily Browning, Arielle Kebbel, David Strathairn, Elizabeth Banks, Maya Massar, Kevin McNulty, Jesse Moss
Rating: PG-13
Studio: Dreamworks

Release Info:
Theatrical Release: January 30, 2009
DVD Release Date: April 28, 2009
Online Availability: Amazon for $27.99

I have made it my mission to see anything that looks halfway decent that is in the thriller and/or horror genres. Sometimes I make it a goal to see movies in this genre even when they look bad. One of the best things about being a reviewer is it opens my eyes to more good (and bad) movies than I ever would have seen on my own. In the case of The Uninvited I am certain that I would have seen this regardless of whether I had to review it or not. It just looked like one of the movies I would have to see. In fact, I was hyped about this movie just from previews, so I anxiously awaited it’s arrival on Blu-ray.

Offering great acting and an ending that most people will not see coming, The Uninvited has what it takes to be a popular thriller. I refuse to call it a horror movie, because it is not scary. It is filled with suspense and offers a good story, but it’s not horror movie scary. Calling it that really just makes the movie seem mediocre. However, when you call it a thriller, it is well worth watching.

The thing that allows The Uninvited to succeed in the way that it does is the acting. Elizabeth Banks is creepily suspicious and David Strathairn has enough acting chops to make the movie seem a cut above, with just his presence. The real star of the show though is Emily Browning. As the major character, Browning had a lot of work to do, but she makes it look effortless. She is as frantic as you need her to be at all times. Wearing her emotions on her sleeve, Browning was perfect for this part and will be a credit to the genres should she wish to pursue future horror and/or thriller movie roles.

The thing that I liked the most here was that I didn’t see the ending coming. I credit this partially to the acting jobs of Browning and Arielle Kebbel. Had lesser actors been handling the roles, there would have been a less than captivating performance and the viewer would have been able to focus strictly on what was going on with the script and not the realism provided by the emotional actors. These girls will keep you on your toes throughout the movie and make you gasp when the ending comes. If Hitchcock were alive you could imagine him directing a movie like The Uninvited. The ironic nature of the thriller would be right up his alley. In any case, Charles and Thomas Guard certainly did the genre justice in this case.

The The Uninvited Plot
Anna Rydell (Browning) has been through one hell of a year. She is just getting out of a mental institution after recovering from a horrendous accident where her already ill mother (Maya Massar) dies in an explosion. Anna is returning home to her sister Alex (Kebbel), Dad (Strathairn – Spiderwick Chronicles), and much to her chagrin her new stepmother Rachel (Elizabeth Banks).

From the minute she returns home Anna is suspicious of Rachel. While she may be her new stepmother, she was also her mother’s nurse. Alex warns her that things have changed. Their dad is oblivious to all of the bad things that Rachel does. In fact, he won’t listen to a word Alex says on the matter. Anna’s family is changing before her eyes and it seems that Rachel is the puppet master pulling all the strings.

The girls realize that they have to learn the truth about Rachel to get rid of her. They don’t know who she is or what they will find, but they are sure they will find something that is bad enough to get rid of her. Anna’s boyfriend, (before she was committed) Matt (Jesse Moss) wants to help her learn what happened the night her mother died, but something happens and he cannot help her. Rachel keeps a watchful eye out on Anna. Her father takes this as loving protection, but Anna isn’t so sure. She thinks it could be something far worse.

With the clock ticking, Anna and Alex need to find out the truth about Rachel to save their family before it’s too late. The question is, when they find the answers, will their father believe them or will the girl’s have to take matters in their own hands?

Storyline/Plot: [rating:4.5]
Replayability: [rating:5]
Acting: [rating:4.5]
Directing: [rating:4.5]

Audio/Visual:
With 1080p and a 1.78:1 aspect ratio, The Uninvited looks better than average. It is not perfect, but then most movies are not. For what it’s worth and the style of movie that it is, there is little to complain about. The level of detail is high, the color palette is acceptable, and everything looks good. Flesh tones and other colors come through realistically. There aren’t any compression errors or issues with dirt or noise. At worst, this is just a pretty basic transfer. It is neither spectacular nor bad. It’s better than many blu-rays, but it is not one of the best.

The Dolby TrueHD 5.1 lossless works well for this film. While the video was good, the audio seems to be even better. There are no problems to report with the sound. Everything came out evenly and things like volume toggling were not an issue. The score sounded great, music and special effects were crisp and clear, and dialogue was always easy to hear. It was dynamic in all the right spots and while it was not as captivating as some blu-rays I have heard, it certainly gets the job done well. In addition to the English track, there are Spanish and French Dolby Digital 5.1 tracks available. Subtitles are offered in English, Spanish, French, and Portuguese.

Visual: [rating:4]
Audio: [rating:4.5]

Bonus Features:
The most disappointing part of this Blu-ray is the section of special features. Short of offering only previews, there is the least amount of content they could possibly add. There is no commentary, only one featurette, and a few added extras and that’s it. You would think there would be more, but there really isn’t anything else to report.

The behind the scenes feature is called “Unlocking The Uninvited.” As far as behind the scenes featurettes go it is basic. There are bits of the cast and crew talking about the film and the experience working with the other actors. Nothing too in depth is discussed. It’s just real general stuff. This is followed up with some deleted scenes and an alternative ending. In both cases, it’s easy to see why these scenes were dropped. They add minimal amounts and in the case of the ending, would not have worked as well as the current choice.

Bonus Features: [rating:1.5]

Bottom Line:
I like to think of The Uninvited more like a thriller than a horror film. As a thriller, it is a more successful venture. In any case, you are offered an interesting story with excellent acting. The lead actors and characters manage to be engaging throughout the entire film, something that is rare in many movies of this type. Fans of the genre will want to check this out. If you want to save a few bucks, you could get away with buying the DVD. Whichever you choose does not matter much, both formats come recommended for purchase.

[rating:overall]

[tags] Blu-ray Review, The Uninvited, Horror, Thriller, Movie, Movie Review, Elizabeth Banks, Mental Institution[/tags]

LI Reviews Giveaway: Win One of Ten Copies of The Uninvited on DVD

Sunday, April 26th, 2009

The Uninvited DVD Box ArtENTRY RULES:
LI Reviews is proud to be giving away one of ten copies of The Uninvited on DVD. To enter all you need to do is leave us a comment. Please be sure to only leave one.

COMMENTS ARE MODERATED to avoid spam, so it will not show up right away. People who leave multiple comments will be deleted from the contest altogether. If you do not see your comment within a day then by all means leave another one. Otherwise, do not worry as we accept comments several times a day.

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GET AN EXTRA ENTRY:
Want an extra entry? Twitter about this contest!

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DVD Review: Donkey Punch

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

Donkey Punch DVD Box ArtMovie Info:
Writers: David Bloom, Oliver Blackburn
Director: Oliver Blackburn
Cast: Robert Boulter, Nichola Burley, Tom Burke, Julian Morris, Jaime Winstone
Rating: Unrated
Studio: Magnolia

Release Info:
Theatrical Release: July 18, 2008
DVD Release Date: April 7, 2009
Online Availability: Amazon for $22.99

Reviewing a movie named Donkey Punch just makes me giggle. I suppose that’s because I know what the term means. For those not in the know, a Donkey Punch is something that supposedly occurs during “backdoor” sex. In order to tighten the muscles, the male punches the receiver in the back of the head or neck. That’s a Donkey Punch. It’s not certain to work. It’s brutal and somewhat violent. It could even cause death. The title lives up to its name with the brutality and violence. It also opens a very telling window into what this film is about.

The cover of the DVD case says something like it is the sexiest thriller of the year. I honestly don’t know that sexy would apply here. I am pretty open-minded, but I think I will be skipping taking mind altering drugs on boats with men I don’t know from now on. After all, a girl can never be too safe. In any event, having sex and being sexy are too different things. Donkey Punch has sex (and I mean a lot of sex), but it’s not the sexy kind. Actually, I would consider it raunchier, which is by no means bad, but certainly different.

While this is a decent movie that certainly has a plot that you do not see very often, it’s going to be limited in the amount of interest that it receives. Horror fans may not be used to this much gore. American horror is often the tamest of all the countries that make movies like this. However, Donkey Punch breaks all the conventional rules of what people will be used to seeing. The film was actually made in the UK, so it’s an English speaking film. So, even though it is not made in the country, there are no subtitles, which differ from what you see in the US. It’s no surprise that this is unrated. To see it the way it should be seen it has to be unrated. If it were shown as is and had a rating it would probably fall into the NC-17 range.

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BD Review: Hellraiser

Monday, April 20th, 2009

Hellraiser Blu-Ray Box ArtMovie Info:
Writers:Clive Barker
Director: Clive Barker
Cast: Andrew Robinson, Clare Higgins, Ashley Laurence, Sean Chapman, Oliver Smith, Robert Hines, Anthony Allen, Leon Davis, Michael Cassidy, Frank Baker, Kenneth Nelson, Gay Baynes
Rating: R
Studio: Anchor Bay Home Entertainment

Release Info:
Theatrical Release: September 18, 1987
DVD Release Date: April 21, 2009
Online Availability: Amazon for $14.99

I had never seen Hellraiser or any of its sequels prior to watching this film. I had heard of Pinhead and knew a little bit about who Pinhead was, but I didn’t really have any idea about what to expect when I was watching this film. I’m an old school horror buff. I grew up in the 80s when horror was in its prime. Hellraiser has become a cult classic and after finally watching it, I can see why.

The topic of pain as a way to find pleasure has always intrigued me. Add in the 80s style of filming horror, decent writing by British horror master, Clive Barker, and a bad ass bad guy (Pinhead is certainly one of a kind) and you have Hellraiser. I admit it. I’d heard good things about this movie, so I was excited to review it. It’s nice to know I wasn’t disappointed!

Fans of the series (which consists of 7 sequels) say this is the best in the series. There has been talk of a remake, but I am of the firm belief that 80s horror can never be replicated. Sure, the effects are substandard, but that’s a part of the 80s horror charm. Making the effects more realistic doesn’t change that fact that movies like Hellraiser are classic films because of what they had to offer to viewers both in the 80s and today. Hellraiser is a timeless classic for a reason.

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