Archive for the 'Reviews by Deadman' Category

Jun

Comments Off on Extraterrestrial

Welcome back to another review, folks! Ever since a certain fire happened in a certain sky alien abduction movies were hotter than Agent Scully in the 90’s. Though the premise seems to have lost it’s foothold in the movies as of late, there are still some gems that can be found. For instance; our review today: Extraterrestrial.

While this is supposed to be an alien movie it does it’s best to be a sci-fi, suspense, horror, and even a touch political. These elements in a film usually don’t blend well, but, here, they do. We start with a horror beginning: 20-somethings all in a car to go to a cabin in the woods for a few nights of partying, sex, and debauchery. Mistake #1: They’re in a cabin in the woods! Don’t these folks read my reviews? Never go in the woods!

After a quick setup, and some exposition that isn’t really needed, we begin our weekend with our victims…ahem…characters. Almost immediately stuff starts going down. While one can argue you want to know about the character’s personalities, I, for one, don’t. Let’s commence the murdering! Lights flicker, strange noises! An alien starts to walk around the house and….gets shot by a girl with a shotgun. Well. I did say let’s get to the murdering.

After E.T. goes down, making the pool his final grave, stuff REALLY hits the fan. Appropriate reactions have already been done by this point in the movie, but there are a lot of cool things yet to see. They try to flee, but there’s a tree felled in their way. Suddenly the rain stops while they ponder what could have possibly cut that tree down. These guys would trip over the laces in their velcro strapped shoes. How did they get into college? Right. Michigan State strikes again.

After some of the worst pondering, and decision making I’ve seen this side of swimming with sharks while strapped with steaks and barbecue sauce, we lose our first female to the blue light of abduction. Or as I’ve come to call it: The Bye-bye Beam. Quick! Back in the car that wasn’t functioning just a few minutes ago! We go back to meet a character, that couldn’t be more cliché if it was Jesse Ventura in a tinfoil hat, to learn more about the alien menace. After a quick break from screaming and running we get right back to screaming and running.

Jesse Ventura takes on an alien and, surprisingly, it’s a pretty good scene, ending with what you should’ve seen coming a mile away. More running! More lights! And, just for good measure, they even managed to scrounge up that ‘BWAHHH’ sound from the remake of ‘War of the Worlds’, and every Hans Zimmer soundtrack since. But that’s a tale for another time. What’s that? A would-be protagonist? Go for it, Hoss!

Enter one of the film’s side characters, who the whole movie could’ve been about, but wasn’t, Goodguy McCopDude. We established at the outset of the movie, through a very long scene that we really didn’t need, that he’s been investigating the disappearance of his daughter. How important is this plot point? Important enough to cut from the main characters and their impending deaths to go to a random RV site with a random character to get more exposition to tell us that aliens are the culprit. Which I wouldn’t mind so much if the title wasn’t EXTRATERRESTRIAL!

Goodguy McCopDude is hot on the trail of…no one. And, truth be told, I don’t even remember why he was summoned to the cabin in the woods to begin with. It goes by that quick, folks, don’t fault the viewer for losing a little interest when the action goes from high-octane to donut munching. Goodguy and his cop buddy show up at the Murder Cabin and begin to snoop around, learning the unhinged partiers are being terrorized by aliens. While the partner is skeptical, Goodguy goes full Mulder, and begins to look around.

After a brief, and somewhat fruitless, encounter in the barn Goodguy is convinced it’s those pesky grey skinned fellas causing all the commotion. After he tries to wrangle the panicked few he decides to follow suit and make equally bad decisions, taking his time to convince his partner while sitting in a lit up police car! Well, bad calls can only be called out, as the alien with a shotgun wound turns up and telekinetically forces the skeptic partner and Goodguy to do the unthinkable.

The Bye-bye Beam claims more victims! And soon even the last of the survivors is lost to that fateful blue light. Now. Here’s where the usual movie would call it quits, leaving the audience with the smoldering hole in the ground that was our female lead just a few minutes ago. But it doesn’t. It keeps going, making this movie even longer. Usually I’d say this is a detriment, but the final scenes of this movie kind of answer a few questions that we’ve had for a long time.

No spoilers here, folks! This is a good movie in the fact that it does, in most of it, fuse themes taken from so many genres. The actors do their parts, some sold it well, others not so much. The effects and some of the practical effects are worth praise. It has it’s flaws, like serious plot holes, and characters that make really bad decisions, but it’s worth the pay off. Check this one out, folks. As always, thanks for reading, and stay out of the woods.

roadside attractions

  • There’s no reason for that shot.
  • That wasn’t there before.
  • Boarding up the windows with Ikea.
  • Why did you get out of the car?
  • That was a cool rain effect.
  • Seriously. Why did you get out of the car?
  • 90’s cliche camerawork.
totals

7

blood

BLOOD

Not much. Butt there is that one scene.

1

blood

BREASTS

I think I saw a nip slip. Maybe not.

6

beast

BEASTS

Old design, new things done.

7.5 OVERALL
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May

Comments Off on WolfCop

Welcome back, folks. Know those instances when the stars align and all the good things in the universe let forth a movie to satisfy your most inner B-movie aficionado? Well. Look no further than today’s review! It has everything you could ever want in, not only a horror movie, but a raunchy comedy, a bad superhero flick, and lastly, a gore-fest. Oh, yeah. This movie has all of that, and more! So let’s dive right in.

The movie begins in a backwater port town filled with degenerates and law breakers on almost every conceivable corner. No, really, it’s illustrated often enough. Our main character, whose name is irrelevant, because all you’ll call him is ‘Wolf Cop’, wakes up, hungover and late for work. As a sheriff. The next few minutes are spent with him as we watch his drive to work, passing by several crimes on the way, ranging from assault to public intoxication. The next scene or two establishes something we’ve already figured out: The town sucks, the three person police force sucks, and our main guy is an alcoholic. Yup. I think they hammered that nail home hard enough.

Well, after several scenes of continuing alcohol libation and police work that makes a school crossing guard look like the entire SWAT team, we come to the first plot point of the movie: a murder, most foul! And our less than sober hero was involved. With badly shot flashbacks plaguing him, and a new scar, that seems more decorative than menacing, and a hangover to match it all; we begin another day with our hero. This is the first time anything is actually being let on about the supernatural aspect of this movie. Yeah, I know, this is slow going, but trust me when I say it’s worth it. Behold the second plot point! The town’s drink and shoot event is mysteriously canceled! Oh…no?

All the commotion and ‘who-dun-it’ type questions that keep coming up get our main character to actually do something about it! What’s surprising is that this is supposed to be a horror comedy, but these few minutes of detective work actually feel like a cop movie for just a moment. But, it IS a horror comedy, so shenanigans must be at foot! Wolf Cop begins to feel a little sick, throws up on the hot girl in the movie, goes down stairs to the bathroom, and begins probably the most painful werewolf transformation of all time. Go ahead, ask why it’s so painful. Since you asked so nicely I’ll iterate.

While the rest of the movie is off-kilter, there is one aspect that remains true: The transformation of the wolf by shedding the human skin. Only what makes this particular change so incredibly hard to bear is simple: It starts with a very clear, dynamically framed shot of the main character’s penis, which, after secreting blood, promptly explodes. You read that right. Explodes. It’s like a car crash. It’s horrifying, you wince every time, but you can’t help but watch. My current count is three. Okay, five. After some less than hospitable men follow him down to the bathroom the gratuitous violence finally starts.

Or, rather, we can cut away after some very teasing shots of what the werewolf looks like. Yeah, we don’t get to see it, just yet. More things happen! More characters are introduced! Funny dialogue! No, really, some of the lines are hilarious, most I can’t post here, but all worth a listen. We get to see more cop work and the main guy cope with his new heightened senses, and resisting the want to rip apart a guy kicking a dog. I can sympathize. Human wolf cop goes back to the bathroom where he made a mess, trying to figure out what happened. Yeah, I know.

A couple of scenes later we get to finally meet the wolf. While the design is nothing original, it is used to it’s utmost hilarity. An over sized wolf man stuffed inside a cop uniform two sizes too small. He responds to a robbery in progress and delivers the line that I was hoping to use in this review. Great minds and their thinking, I guess. After that scene and all the laughs that go with it we get some more violence! And I mean violence! But we can’t have a superhero wolfcop without a superhero wolfcop vehicle! Cue the heavy metal car building montage!

We burn down the rural road number 9,230 to drug barn number 2,412 to fight bad guys! And this is where gratuity becomes the norm. In the midst of a raging gunfight set to the backdrop of a burning barn we have limbs torn off, heads severed from shoulders, all sorts of blood spilled in all sorts of ways, and probably my favorite moments of this entire movie: A man with his face ripped off, clean to the skull, running around screaming at the top of his lungs. I don’t feel bad for guffawing at the entire thing, and neither should you.

One of the only problems I had with this movie, in the beginning, was the slow progression of the plot. Yes, folks, there is one. But as the movie goes on the plot points come one after another, and at one point, so many at one point that you just have to throw your hands up and go ‘Okay, sure!’ But, it’s still all highly entertaining. There is some more who-dun-it type stuff, and a lot more drinking, humor, and violence left to go in the movie, as it seems the drink and hunt event wasn’t exactly ‘canceled’, but rather goes through a change of venue. You’ll see.

The last scenes of this beautiful, blood filled, cornucopia begin to creep up on us, and all the oddball antics begin to make sense. But, you know me, folks. No spoilers, here. This movie is a great watch. It has all the stereotypes, all the tropes, and every single bit of over-the-top ridiculousness that makes B-movies wonderful. This gore/comedy/schlock-fest gets two enthusiastic thumbs up from this Deadman. Give it a watch, folks, and thank me later. Thanks for coming, don’t forget the speakers, and, as always, stay tuned!

roadside attractions

  • Breakfast of champions.
  • Fuzzy Handcuffs.
  • Is this band the entire soundtrack?
  • Keep an eye out.
  • This band is the entire soundtrack.
  • Sequel bait much?
totals

10

blood

BLOOD

Buckets upon buckets upon body parts.

7

blood

BREASTS

While not many, they are top shelf.

10

beast

BEASTS

Not a single complaint.

9.3 OVERALL
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Apr

Comments Off on The Intruders

Welcome back to another review, folks! So. You know those movies you really want to be good, but just aren’t? The situation when you know the actors, their skills, even sometimes their histories, but the movie they’re in is just so….boring. This is where this movie lies. I only watched it, truthfully, beacause I recognized some of the names in the ‘Starring’ box. Ow. My nostalgia. Why am I going on about this? Well, let’s get started and find out.

This movie is starring an actor I’ve been aware of and following since they were a child star….Not…not in a creepy way, either. Ahem. Anyways, the arguable ‘main star’ of this movie is Miranda Cosgrove, playing every stereotype in every horror movie, ever. Yeah. It’s that bad. How bad? Well. Let’s see: Lost a parent? Check. Current parent thrown into their work to not cope? Check. Teenager left alone constantly? Check. Whining about being somewhere else incessantly? Check. Bland, predictable romance with what seems to be the only boy in all of the city? Check. Oh, the list goes on and on. I was going to turn this movie into a drinking game, like I have others in the past, but if I did that I’d be begging someone for a liver transplant. You can do the exact same checklist of tropes for every. Single. Character. In fact, I encourage you to make a checklist and go down it as the movie plays.

So the story goes as every other story has gone. The mother of the main character committed suicide, though this is tip-toed around until near the end, forcing the father to take their emotionally unstable daughter to Chicago for a change of pace. Enter ‘We gotta fix up this place’ scenario to introduce the one man crew of a restoring company character. But not before we meet the pouty, mopey, bland as water neighbors: a daughter and a father. The father played by Tom Sizemore, one of my favorite actors, is of course given a ‘I’m so creepy I could be a murderer’ vibe to try and push this already boring story forward. And by push it forward I mean add little, to nothing, to the plot. The daughter, however, is angsty and doesn’t really like the new neighbors, leaving the meeting with an ominous line. Or it would be ominous if you could understand it! The entire conversation I just told you about is done in such hushed tones and mumbles that I had to switch on the subtitles. And, for some reason, as Miranda Cosgrove’s character leaves the driveway scene of mumbling, she finds a necklace on the ground. If you just said that the necklace pertains to the house being haunted; go get yourself a cookie.

That’s right. We start to push the supernatural aspect at this point, shadows walking by open doors, crying in the night, all of which has the teenage daughter up in arms, but the father, despite us knowing he’s sleeping in the same house, doesn’t hear a thing. But, then again, if I were popping painkillers like this guy was, I’d probably be just as comatose. Things start to pop up, a doll’s head, a half eaten potato, a can of tuna, and, of course, more info about who used to live in the house before. I don’t get the potato thing, either, folks. Begin research montage! Typical, I know, I know. End with more supposed supernatural things happening, but not too frightening, cause in the midst of all this mystery and possible murder the main character finds time to sneak out and go to a pool party with her would-be boyfriend. Gotta keep those priorities in line, folks! So after that happens, don’t worry, there’s no underage shenanigans going on in this movie; the cold shouldered neighbor suddenly becomes the chatty Kathy.

After some very shaky exposition, and I do mean shaky, as to some young woman who was abused, ran away, was taken under wing by some creepy spinster and her son, who is equally creepy. The young woman suddenly disappears, as does the creepy son, and they all chalk it up to running away together. Although the neighbor, Tom Sizemore, does get indicted for kidnapping and such, but that’s just there to keep the story somewhat diverse. It fails. After a suicide scare scene between Miranda Cosgrove’s character and her father, which, truth be told, the best scene in the movie. Why? We actually get to see the two actors really belt out a scene, and in that scene, it’s actually well put together. I’ll give kudos where it’s due. Too bad the rest of the movie is lacking that genuine feel and actual chemistry between the two characters. It’s a single shimmer of good in a whole lot of bad, but it is a good scene. And let me tell you, you’ll need it to stomach the remainder of the movie. Right after this scene we go directly into the final scenes.

I won’t spoil anything, but it’s all so painfully obvious that you can’t watch it and say “Of course that would happen!” in a sarcastic tone. You will literally mean it. With bad pacing, an opening that promised horror, the rest of the movie that fails to do so, weak acting from good actors, and a script so generic bread looks exciting, this movie fails at being horror, suspense, or anything truly scary. Thanks for reading, folks! And, as always, Stay Tuned!

roadside attractions

  • Really? Just…Really
  • Everyone Saw That Coming
  • Old Cell Phone
  • Juice Nazi
  • New Cell Phone
  • Concerned About Taxi Rides
  • Not About Haunted Houses
totals

2

blood BLOOD

One Strangling. One Stabbing.

1

blood BREASTS

There’s a pool party. That’s it.

0

beast BEASTS

Creepy is as creepy does.

2 OVERALL
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Mar

Comments Off on The Taking of Deborah Logan

Welcome back to another review, folks. And to one, in a tired genre, that actually somehow manages to creep me out a bit. Not spill my popcorn scared, or even jump scare…scared, but the kind of genuine creep you can only get from certain kinds of movies. We all have that one little niche that makes us cringe at the very thought of watching something in that little caveat. For some it’s creepy children, for others it’s clowns, other have bugs, and I happen to have possession movies.

Now, in this day and age there are a hundred million billion and five found footage films. Add this one to the pile. After some student, who’s studying Alzheimer’s and it’s effects on people and relationships, finds the perfect family to study, all goes wrong. It seems that the whole thing might go a little bit deeper than just a disease. Good setup, I’m not gonna lie. But. Let’s count the stereotypes, shall we? Victims…I mean students, grainy footage, an older actress willing to subject herself to some harsh conditions for some recognition, and a whole lot of jump scares. We’re ready.

After arriving at murder farm number 19,234 our crew sets up and begins interviews for the entire documentation of what their entire trip is going to entail. This is as boring as it sounds, folks. I’d like to say that they’re building a bit of a relationship with the characters, but it all ends up very muddled due to bad editing. In fact, the editing gets so bad in some parts that I had to question where in the timeline it was all happening. I’m not sure if that was done intentionally, to throw the viewer into as much confusion as the actors and characters, or if someone just thought themselves clever. Either way, it gets old quick.

Now, the trick to building a scary movie, or even a creepy one, is to build a story behind what’s in front of the camera. And this movie takes that to task, and actually pretty well, I’m not afraid to add. We start learning of the town they live in’s mysterious past, several deaths that lean towards the ‘Ritual Sacrifice’ way of bad things, and even a very disgruntled farmer from next door. Now, this would be enough, if it weren’t for the whole ‘suffering daughter’ subplot that they shove in our faces. Honestly, if this movie were to cut just a few things out, it’d be a whole lot better. I’m not trying to be insensitive, but when there’s cliches in a cliché movie, it makes me want to sigh so hard I knock over my drink.

Of course, as dictated by the laws of found footage films, we hit the ¾ mark and finally start getting some spooky stuff, and I’m not gonna lie, it gets pretty intense in some scenes. An old piece of phone equipment fires up and starts spewing voices, a window that was just nailed closed is open suddenly, paintings by the ailing mother depict a figure that keeps getting closer, and a few more scenes that I’m not going to spoil for anyone. As we creep closer to the final scenes more and more of that whole ‘mysterious town’ thing start popping up.

After a rushed explanation and some quick exposition that takes us from that small farm to a hospital, then back to the farm, then back to the hospital….I think. I lost track, sorry. We get confirmation of a lot of things that most viewers could put together in passing as the final scenes come into play. I’ll say this, as I don’t like spoilers: They went into the woods.

With some interesting scenarios sprinkled throughout the movie, bad acting balanced out with some good acting, and scares that are actually creepy, this movie takes a long time to shape up, but it goes out swinging. I recommend it to anyone wanting a bit of a creep fest before bed. Thanks for reading, folks. Stay tuned!

roadside attractions

  • Operating machinery nude
  • Eat Dirt Taken Literally
  • That had to hurt
  • Never go into the woods
  • Snakes are not good
  • Told you not to go into the woods
  • You are what you eat
totals

2

blood

BLOOD

More creep than gore.

1

blood

BREASTS

The number depends on your taste.

4

beast

BEASTS

It’s a possession movie. You’ll see.

7 OVERALL
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Watch the trailer for “The Taking of Deborah Logan”

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Jan

posted by deadman | January 18, 2015 | B-movie Reviews, B-movies, modern horror, Reviews by Deadman

Comments Off on Mecha Shark Vs Mega Shark

Hello, again, folks! Let’s get into yet another installment of the Megaladon series that has plagued the airways for years. You know, cause there’s fans just hammering SyFy inboxes for another. Let’s see if we got all the proper ingredients for a movie that makes as much sense as going into the woods. TV stars searching for a paycheck? Yup. Props left over from the previous twelve SyFy movies? Can’t miss them. CGI that makes Jurassic Park look photorealistic? Oh yeah. Now we can begin.

So this little romp takes place, according to the movie, several places all over the world. Truth be told it’s just Google maps zoomed in on with some text over laid. I’m fairly certain you can see the watermark during at least one scene. Well, now that global warming has began melting the ice caps another Megaladon escapes it’s icy prison! Okay who let Al Gore pen this? And on top of that; how many of these sharks are frozen in these places? Did they have a shark convention in the arctic circle and were caught off guard by a sudden freeze?

Well after said 200 foot shark is released we’re greeted by an Angel and Stargate alumni to come and combat the situation with their version of a cliché voice activated semi-intelligent electronic butler and, you guessed it, a Mecha shark. Another 200 foot monstrosity made of materials that couldn’t possibly hold up to a normal shark’s bite, but is supposed to be strong enough to take on the great grandaddy of Bruce from Jaws. Science, folks!

After determining that this does, indeed, take place in both San Francisco AND Australia, by hiring actors who can sorta fake the accents, we get to the problem and how to solve it. Yes, even after everything has already been set up, they still feel the need to explain more. Shark attacks, ho! We have to make it the villain, don’t we?

After the same fleet that was in Bermuda Tentacles attempts to take on the Megaladon with no avail they deploy the Mecha shark, which also happens to contain the same cockpit as the one in the aforementioned movie. No, really, do a side by side comparison for a good laugh. Now if all that wasn’t silly enough for you get ready for the combat portion of the movie! They fire torpedoes, the shark dodges, wash, rinse, repeat. I want to know how a creature from thousands of years ago knows how, and why, to dodge underwater missiles.

More Google mapping and zooming! The villain in the movie apparently has apparently been causing all sorts of trouble, including an oil spill that is fixed by the Mecha ramming the pipe closed. That’s an actual scene, folks. Phone calls from a lady, who’s role or why she’s so important to the story is never explained, guide our team to figure out that the Megaladon is actually a bull trying to mate. A point which is hammered home with PG vulgarity that is almost comical to hear.

I wonder if the actor read these lines prior to filming or if he was just surprised with the script the morning of shooting? But that’s not the biggest of their issues, no! It seems we have a problem with the Mechashark malfunctioning and seeing everyone as a potential threat. And here I thought the three laws of robotics were keeping us safe.

Yes, it seems our Stargate alumni has managed to beach the malfunctioning machine in the heart of San Francisco. How does an artificial intelligence deal with that? Easily! It grows tank tracks covered in spikes! It proceeds to terrify a very empty city and a few extras who don’t seem to take their role seriously at all, and it all ends up in it chasing a small girl. You know, cause bad guy. But don’t worry, our ex-Angel star dives into the machine to divert it and lead it back to the sea. Another phone call from mysterious shark lady gives the military the idea to pit the Mecha and the Megaladon against one another. Because it worked so well the last time. Let’s head into the final scenes, folks.

I won’t write any spoilers, but the finally of this movie is just as silly as the rest of it. The directing is as funny as the rest of it, with low swooping shots, slow motion shots and attempts at dramatic angles that it’s easy to see that the person took their job seriously. The actors deliver their lines like they never rehearsed or did a read through, except maybe the morning of shooting while crying in their coffee. And the special effects and gore range from spilled ketchup to attempted dramatic deaths, one in particular which I didn’t understand, at all.

Don’t fret, folks, as long as Netflix still needs things to show, as long as critics need something to groan and yell at, as long as there is cheap CGI, SyFy will be there. Thanks for reading, folks. And, as always, stay tuned!

roadside attractions

  • Roaring Shark
  • Best Bluetooths Ever
  • Electronic Butler 2.0
  • No, Really, Why Did He Die?
  • Wrong Accent
  • Running Joke Attempt
totals

2

blood

BLOOD

3 – TV Friendly Fodder

2

blood

BREASTS

0 – I think maybe there was a bikini somewhere

9

beast

BEASTS

Recycling is good for the environment

4.3 OVERALL
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About the Highway

Lost Highway is your satirical detour down the twisted back roads of b-movies and cult films reviews. learn more >>