Movie Log 2022


You know the drill.

January:

  1. Return of the Street Fighter (1974, Ozawa)-82, Tubi
  2. Santa Sangre (1989, Jodorowsky)-91, Tubi
  3. The Guns of Navarone (1961, Thompson)-94, Netflix Instant Viewing
  4. The Witch Who Came From the Sea (1976, Cimber)-94, Shudder/Tubi
  5. Ichi The Killer (2001, Miike)-91, Shudder
  6. Dream No Evil (1970, Hayes)-60, Shudder
  7. Malatesta’s Carnival of Blood (1973, Speeth)-70, Shudder
  8. Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979, Wise)-75, Hulu
  9. The Matrix Resurrections (2021, Wachowski)-86, Theater Viewing
  10. Dark August (1976,  Goldman)-80, Shudder
  11. Winterbeast (1991, Thies)-80, Shudder
  12. Fatal Exam (1990, Snyder)-71, Shudder
  13. The French Dispatch (2021, Anderson)-100, RedBox
  14. Beyond Dream’s Door (1989, Woelfel)-83, Shudder
  15. G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009, Sommers)-54, Netflix Instant Viewing
  16. Carlito’s Way (1993, De Palma)-96, Tubi
  17. Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021, Watts)-93, Theater Viewing
  18. Eternals (2021, Zhao)-60, Disney+
  19. Encanto (2021, HowardBush), Disney+
  20. Massacre In Dinosaur Valley (1985, Tarantini), Shudder

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: Jack Frost 2: Revenge of the Mutant Killer Snowman (2000, Michael Cooney)


Look I enjoyed the first Jack Frost even if it wasn’t a great movie. The sequel is hilariously awful in a fun way that still means it sucks. Yet I didn’t hate this movie cause it made me laugh and I found the whole thing to be watchable in a bad fun movie way that requires booze. I didn’t have any booze at the time though. Also the reason for Jack Frost still being around is dumb in that usual slasher movie villain way.

Too bad that this sequel lacks the self aware comedic value of the first movie. Yes the kills are fun and this movie wisely follows the sequel rules of a higher death toll. However I can’t recommend this flick even to die hard slasher movie fans. It’s that bad and really it’s not surprising they never made a third movie. Which is also for the best if this is what they cobbled together for the sequel.

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: The Descent (2005, Neil Marshall)


The Descent has a good female cast and the creatures that attack them look cool. However I feel it takes way too long to get going and there were parts where I couldn’t see anything so I didn’t find them to be scary. Oh and the Tubi version was the US one, which contains the lesser ending. The UK one’s ending is more realistic and bleaker, which I prefer instead. Regardless I found this to be merely decent at best and not really deserving of the high reputation it gets from others.

Shauna Macdonald and Natalie Mendoza are the main highlights of the cast, and the creature attacks are pretty effective. I can admire what Neil Marshall was trying to do, even if this just feels as if he redid Dog Soldiers with female actors instead. Also some aspects felt a bit predictable, although that couldn’t be helped, I guess. I will admit that wilderness movies are pretty cool and definitely my kind of thing, and maybe this would benefit from a second viewing.

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: Demonia (1990, Lucio Fulci)


Sadly by the 1990s it seems that the horror master Lucio Fulci had lost his touch, as evidenced by Demomia, which I was hoping would be a cool evil demon nun movie. Alas, it was a bad TV movie style flick where nothing interesting happens until the middle of the movie. Considering the rest of the movies I’ve seen from him are definitely not boring, this is disappointing. Plus this flick tries to be a slasher movie midway through instead of sticking with the killer demon ghost nun bit. Weak.

Even worse is that after years of good or at least decent leading ladies in his movies, Meg Register is really bad. I mean on a level that’s bad even for horror movie acting. She drains any energy this flick had in every scene she is in. I’m really bummed this movie wasn’t good, and I got that sad feeling when one sees a movie from a director they like that stinks. I’m glad I saw this for free on Tubi because if I paid to see this in theaters, I would have been really angry. As it stands it didn’t get a theatrical release, which is a good thing.

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: The House That Screamed (1969, Narciso Ibáñez Serrador)


Although The House That Screamed is a slow burning movie, the movie still has plenty of violence and mayhem to satisfy fans of giallo and slasher movie type films, of which this movie is clearly both. I’m glad that I was unable to guess the identity of the killer, and I really liked this movie despite the characters being the user paper thin clichés that populate these types of movies. The boarding school setting works very well in the movie’s favor, and this flick is probably best known to fans of Elvira, as she featured the movie on her show back in the 1980s. Unfortunately this movie due to including a mother smothering her own son resulted in The House That Screamed being unfairly compared to Psycho, which is silly considering the two films are quite different in style and in tone.

The murders in this movie are pretty brutal, and there is one shot that is particularly gorgeous. You have issues of voyeurism, lesbian overtones and the oppression of those in charge of the school, all which come to a head at one point or another. I’ve seen better foreign slasher movies sure, yet The House That Screamed is a good slow burn and offers a fantastic and super creepy finale. I’ll never forget that ending, that’s for sure. Oh and I’m pretty convinced that Narciso Ibáñez Serrador’s film inspired or had an influence on multiple later, better slasher movies down the road. Alas there is a lack of house screaming, which is made up for human screams. Lots of human screams.

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: The Convent (2000, Mike Mendez)


Despite being a low budget horror movie that didn’t even make it to theaters, The Convent is a fun early 2000s horror movie that I really enjoyed. Also it has some good freaky moments and seems to be both a mix of different horror movies and it’s own, unique take on the demonic nun genre. Plus you sort of care about the characters in this one, and the movie handles it’s business and quits while it’s ahead, which is smart.

Adrienne Barbeau headlines a cast of people I’ve never heard of, plus Coolio and Bill Moseley in smaller roles. The kills in this flick are pretty gnarly, and there is even some funny moments that sometimes work. Despite being fairly cheesy, this movie is wonderfully goofy in a that good cult movie way. I don’t think they could really make a movie like this now, especially since parts of the film reminded me more of 1980s and 1990s horror. 1990s horror really hasn’t inspired too many imitators, although perhaps it just doesn’t have the nostalgia factor of previous decades. Give it time though I’m sure it will happen.

Horrorfest Presents: Frankenstein’s Castle of Freaks (1974, Dick Randall)


First off no one is sure who directed Frankenstein’s Castle of Freaks in the first place. Secondly, this movie is a weird mess that doesn’t work as a movie or a Frankenstein flick, which is too bad since the Hammer Studios Peter Cushing one ended that same year in 1974. This movie coasts on nudity, violence and goofy moments that don’t really work. Then the movie actually tries in the last act yet even manages to botch that to a certain degree.

Maybe I wasn’t in the right frame of mind to watch this, or perhaps I’ve seen better takes on the material and I couldn’t help but compare Frankenstein’s Castle of Freaks to those. Either way, I don’t regret watching this flick even if it wasn’t a good movie, if only to continue my quest to view every Frankenstein movie ever made. I can’t help myself sometimes.

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: Two Thousand Maniacs! (1964, Herschell Gordon Lewis)


Not only did Herschell Gordon Lewis manage to make one of the earliest slasher gore flicks with Blood Feast, he then followed it up with an early redneck torture genre movie in Two Thousand Maniacs! Sure the acting remains wonderfully awful, yet beneath that and some cheesy moments lies a movie that in 1964 examines the South being unable to let the Civil War go. Sadly that aspect remains more relevant than ever, and it makes me appreciate this movie more than others do I suppose.

That and the kills are really disturbing and gory for a drive in 1960s flick. Lewis was not afraid to go beyond any lines of good taste, and the poor Northerners who stumble into the town of Pleasant Valley find out all too well how thirsty for revenge the folks of the town are, via multiple different ways of violence! He helps create the cliches of the two dumb redneck guys responsible for orchestrating the chaos, the victims who fail to realize what is happening until it’s too late, and a fun twist ending that would be at home in any modern horror movie.

Lewis did all this, and helped along with others to drag the horror movie genre into the modern era kicking and screaming. I want to see more of his other movies, and I think myself and others have more of an appreciation for his movies, good or bad. This flick will stick with me for a while, that’s for sure.

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: Death By Invitation (1971, Ken Friedman)


This movie has some good kills, yet Death By Invitation is a low budget bore that doesn’t work. I mean you have a woman who is the reincarnation of a woman burned for witchcraft, yet there’s no indication she has any powers or whatever. Nope she just murders people in the fashion of a slasher villain, which is fine but a tad routine. I was hoping for something either more goofy or creepy, and the film doesn’t accomplish either one.

Honestly I fell asleep sitting through this film multiple times, which is a bad sign. I don’t remember any of the characters, and I think the ending was ok, maybe? The worst movies are the meh ones, the flicks that I sit through and forget I even saw them a year later. Or even months later. This is one of those.

Horrorfest 2021 Presents: Hannah, Queen of the Vampires aka Crypt of the Living Dead (1973, Julio Salvador, Ray Danton)


Despite having two titles for some reason and being mostly a slow burn, Crypt of the Living Dead is a solid 1970s horror movie. I would have liked more vampire moments from a vampire movie, still the final act is awesome and the movie builds up a good enough atmosphere. The beach ocean shots are kind of haunting, actually, and I was left satisfied by how the movie concluded.

A professor of archeology, Bolton, shows up on an island after his father horribly dies. Suspecting it was murder instead of an accident, he contends with both a local wildman and the ancient legend of a vampire woman entombed by the ocean. There is a torches scene that is a good example of the classic mob scene, and when the movie does have vampire related scenes they are well done. Some of this reminded me of a Hammer Studios movie, other parts were very Jean Rollin or Mario Bava. If you are going to borrow, do it from the best.

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