Movie Review: Evil Dead

Director:   
Fede Alvarez (known for: Evil Dead)

Starring:          
Jane Levy (known for: Suburgatory)
Shiloh Fernandez (known for: Evil Dead)

 

What’s it about?

When five friends travel to a remote cabin in the woods, they discover the Book of the Dead and unwittingly summon up demons. They are possessed in succession until only one remains for a “bloody” final confrontation.

Is it any good?

Be sure to keep the barf-bag close at hand for this unrelenting blood soaked reboot of Sam Raimi’s 1981 cult classic ‘The Evil Dead’. This brand new vision from director Fede Alvarez alters the original’s story by injecting a little more flesh to the Book of the Dead and some substance to the characters. The history of the Book of the Dead is dipped in demonic cat-hating witchcraft while each character brings their own segment to the story. Fans of the original such as myself may feel a little dirty without a charismatic lead such as the original’s Bruce Campbell but rest assured, Jane Levy brings a nice performance as Mia a struggling drug addict. Once possessed by the infamous rapist trees (yes it’s just as twisted as the original), Levy transforms into one sinister scary as hell demonic chick. The rest of the cast do their best but like the original, they purely serve as demon flesh puppets. When all of these ingredients combine, we are left with what feels like more of a franchise reboot rather than a remake of the original, which concludes Raimi’s ‘The Evil Dead’ with justice and dedication. I loved the little nods to the original scattered about, such as the rusty 1973 Oldsmobile that Levy is sitting on when we first meet her character. The low-budget of the original gave it a cheesy comedic feel, although it was never supposed to be a comedy. This new edition also has a serious tone, which in my opinion was a great choice; perhaps the sequel will follow in the footsteps of ‘Evil Dead 2′ and bring on the laughs. In saying that though, I did find myself laughing my arse off at the over the top gore-porn, which I might add was done with practical effects rather than CGI; it’s refreshing to see some old school entertainment is still alive. In the long run ‘Evil Dead’ brings some genuine scares and enough blood to save Australia’s donation shortage.

Best bit?

Mia puts an end to the demonic carnage with that trusty old chainsaw.

 

ratings are out of 5

 

Did you know?

In one scene there are cards spread out on the table. The cards are laid out in the order that Cheryl reads them in the original.

Game Review: The Silent Age

Platform: iPhone
Genre: Strategy/ Horror
Size: 55.9 MB
Cost: Free

What’s it about?

40 years into the future mankind has become extinct. Stuck between a desolate future and a present where he is largely ignored, it is now up to our accidental hero, Joe, to find out what has happened and how to prevent it in order to save mankind.

Is it any good?

This game is brilliant. Created by independent company House on Fire, this little gem had me hooked from the moment it asks you to ‘use your headphones’. The game oozes style and simplicity. The game itself is a point and click adventure, made popular in the earlier years of gaming. The graphics and style of game is amazing, so simple, but so effective, it looks fantastic on the iPhone.

The game allows for Joe to ‘time-travel’ at will, which is essential to solve some rather problematic puzzles. The art direction is also very cool. Much in the vein of the horror series ‘Silent Hill’, one location has two ‘looks’, this one based on which time period you are in. The music is eerie and hypnotic, providing ample atmospheric chills to rival any big budget film production. The downside, it’s too short! The game features five episodes and takes about an hour to complete. The good news is that the brilliant story is conceived as multi-episodic adventure. Since the game is created by an independent developer, the makers have started a kickstarter for donations to make episode 2. I recommend you download ‘The Silent Age’ and donate money for episode 2, immediately!

Damn, squatters…I’m sooooo calling Today Tonight!

Best bit?

The opening title sequence. Featuring still images and haunting music, a prime example of less is more.

 

ratings are out of 5

 

Download on the AppStore

Movie Review: Wild Zero

Director:   
Tetsuro Takeuchi (known for: Wild Zero)

Starring:          
Guitar Wolf (known for: Wild Zero)
Drum Wolf (known for: Wild Zero)

 

What’s it about?

When aliens attack Earth they turn people into zombies for some reason. Only legendary garage punk power trio Guitar Wolf along with the help of their rock’n roll blood brother Ace can save the day.

Is it any good?

‘Wild Zero’ is the Japanese “jet rock’n roll” B-movie horror zombie comedy classic that every other B-movie horror zombie comedy wishes they were and more. With flesh-eating zombies, nut crushing hot pants, naked chicks with guns, transgender love, loud power metal, muscle cars, and shuriken guitar picks; this film feels more Japanese than Hentai. ‘Wild Zero’ stars Japanese garage punk band Guitar Wolf who also wrote the ear-bashing energetic soundtrack which plays an important role in accelerating the story and no doubt became the reason for the film’s cult status. Along with Guitar Wolf there is a bevy of strange characters on hand. Much of the story centers around Ace, the wacky infatuated “biggest Guitar Wolf fan in the world”. Ace’s love interest in the film is a transgender character named Tobio, while the film’s antagonist is “Captain”, a club manager with an unhealthy obsession with tight shorts, who later in the movie obtains the ability to shoot lasers out of his eyes for some unknown reason. ‘Wild Zero’ was never going to win any awards, the acting is bad the special effects are terrible, but who cares! It’s loud, proud, adrenalizing viewing that contains a surprisingly meaningful message: “Love has no borders, nationalities or genders!” So there you go! Sit back, leave your brain at the door for 90 minutes and let the awesome power of Guitar Wolf blow your mind!

Best bit?

Guitar Wolf puts an end to the alien menace by revealing a samurai sword hidden in the neck of his guitar.

 

ratings are out of 5

 

Did you know?

After completing a U.S tour, Billy/Bass Wolf suffered a fatal heart attack. He passed away in Tokyo on March 31st, 2005. He was 38 years old.

Movie Review: Sinister

Director:   
Scott Derrickson (known for: The Exorcism of Emily Rose)

Starring:          
Ethan Hawke (known for: Gattaca)
Juliet Rylance (known for: Sinister)

 

What’s it about?

Idiotic true crime writer Ellison Oswalt decides to move himself and his family into a new home, where the previous family was brutally murdered (that’s right, this probably won’t end well!). Upon entering the house attic, Oswalt finds a cache of snuff films that suggest the killer is of the serial kind.

Is it any good?

‘Sinister’ is the kind of movie that lives up to it’s name. It is malevolent, evil, perverse, doomfall, threatning, blackhearted and every other “Sinister” synonym that you can think of. If you view a horror movie called “Sinister” then be prepared for just that, don’t expect anything even slightly happy, if you do then you are an absolute tosser (yes, I’m referring to some comments I’ve read online); just a friendly warning. ‘Sinister’ tries desperately to blend scenes of disturbing shock and supernatural scares, this sounds like the perfect horror cocktail; if only the supernatural element wasn’t so damn predictable. The ghostly dead kids with painted white faces and a mask wearing killer bring nothing new to the table, except for the usual jump-scares. The “snuff” film footage is where it’s at, it is truly terrifying and makes you feel genuinely uneasy, and at times in need of therapy. Ethan Hawke does a great job as the stubborn and a little too curious Ellison Oswalt. Although some of the decisions he makes in the film are completely idiotic, you’ll find yourself throwing random objects at the TV. Overall ‘Sinister’ has some thrills and a nice twist at the end, it won’t surprise hardcore horror fans but folks new to the genre will probably enjoy it.

Best bit?

The snuff film with the lawnmower should be watched with your full attention.

 

ratings are out of 5

 

Did you know?

Writer C. Robert Cargill got the idea for the script from a nightmare he had after watching ‘The Ring’.

 

Movie Review: Rubber

Director:   
Quentin Dupieux (known for: Rubber)

Starring:          
Stephen Spinella (known for: Milk)
Roxane Mesquida (known for: For My Sister)

 

What’s it about?

When Robert, a tire, discovers his destructive telepathic powers, he soon sets his sights on a desert town; in particular, a mysterious woman becomes his obsession.

Is it any good?

Back in the 80’s a movie about a killer tyre would have been seen as cheap, exploitation film, possibly directed by Roger Corman. Rubber, although low budget, makes a valiant attempt at making a ridiculous concept somewhat engaging and believable. Shot in America, with American actors, you definitely feel the euro flavour from the French crew. The first five minutes sees the main character perform an excellent, however bizarre monologue to camera, essentially asking the audience to suspend belief. The rest of the movie sees a normal car tyre go on a kill spree, taking out birds, rabbits and eventually humans that cross his path. The cinematography is very good, using a lot of nice natural light and shallow depth of field to give the film a more artistic feel. However, at points you can’t help but feel the filmmakers were in love with their own work a little too much, best represented by having the beginning monologue played during the end credits again….but this time, from a different angle! Um…why? At the end of the day though, it’s a film about a killer tyre and only has enough material for 75 minutes. Looking for something a bit difference? This is worth a view.

Best bit?

The police try to lure the tyre outside of a house with explosive consequences.

 

ratings are out of 5

 

Did you know?

The film was shown in Toronto at the After Dark Film Festival. Fangoria magazine stated the film “deeply split” the audience reaction saying that Rubber earned “huge laughs and applause as well as the only boos heard by Fango at the fest.”