Director: Tom Holland
Starring: Robert John Burke, Joe Mantegna, Michael Constantine, Kari Wuhrer, Lucinda Jenney
“Justice ain’t about bringing back the dead, white man. Justice is about justice. Your friend the policeman, your friend the judge, they make sure nothing happen to you. They keep you safe. But I make sure something happen to them. That justice, white man. Gypsy justice.” (Tadzu Lempke, Thinner)
Here’s a hell of a fact. At the time of writing, there have been a total of 81 films or TV shows based on one of Stephen King’s novels or short stories.
Some are fantastic (The Shining, Pet Sematary, Carrie). Others are The Lawnmower Man.
And then there’s Thinner, which lies somewhere in between. It’s never gone down as a classic Stephen King adaptation, and rightly so, but that doesn’t mean it’s a massive stinker either. Continue reading “Thinner (1996) review”
Director: Alexander Payne
Starring: Matthew Broderick, Reese Witherspoon, Chris Klein, Jessica Campbell
“Dear Lord Jesus, I do not often speak with you and ask for things, but now I really must insist that you help me win the election tomorrow because I deserve it and Paul Metzler doesn’t, as you well know.” (Tracy Flick, Election)
With Reese Witherspoon recently being nominated for a second Academy Award for her performance in Wild, I thought it would be a good time to review my favourite of her films.
Writer/director Alexander Payne is perhaps best known for his Oscar-winning Sideways or his Oscar-nominated Nebraska.
Back when both films were still a twinkle in his eye, though, he wrote and directed Election, a brilliantly sharp satire about classroom politics. Continue reading “Election (1999) review”
Director: Jeff Burr
Starring: Gordon Currie, Chandra West, Ash Adams, Guy Rolfe
“The magic that gives my puppets life was stolen from a tribe of ancient Egyptian sorcerers, who pledged their allegiance to the demon lord Sutek.” (Andre Toulon, Puppet Master 4)
Although Full Moon Pictures had decided by Puppet Master III that its titular terrors were better as protagonists than antagonists, there was still a problem: they still killed humans.
Granted, these humans were evil Nazis, but even so: if only there was a way to have them killing something else rather than people to ensure their moral standards were of the utmost quality.
In fact what if, instead of humans, they could fight other little puppet-sized creatures? Ones that had maybe, I don’t know, been sent to Earth by a demon who looked like a Power Rangers reject?
Enter Puppet Master 4. Continue reading “Puppet Master 4 (1993) review”
Director: Steve Barron
Starring: Judith Hoag, Elias Koteas, voices of Corey Feldman, Josh Pais, Brian Tochi, Robbie Rist
“Death comes for us all, Oroku Saki, but something much worse comes for you. For when you die, it will be without honour.” (Splinter, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
First, a disclaimer. I’m an enormous Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fan. From the Eastman & Laird comics to the ’80s Fred Wolf cartoons to the Playmates toys to the Konami video games, I couldn’t get enough of the lean green teen fighting machines when I was a sprog. And yes, that included this film (and its two sequels).
However, now that I am 31 it is only fair that I try to review the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie with some degree of sensibility and not let my rampant Turtles fanboyism nunchuk its way to the fore. Continue reading “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990) review”
Director: Mary Lambert
Starring: Edward Furlong, Anthony Edwards, Jason McGuire, Clancy Brown, Jared Rushton
“You bury your own.” (Gus, Pet Sematary II)
The original Pet Sematary (disclaimer: one of my favourite horror films ever) revolved around the idea that if something has ceased to be it’s sometimes best to move on and not try to resurrect it.
Mary Lambert’s film showed that any attempt to revive dead children, animals and adults inevitably results in a disturbing aberration that may look similar, but is missing its soul. With Pet Sematary II, she shows how the same rule can apply to ‘dead’ movies too.
The film centers on Jeff Matthews, a young lad played by Edward Furlong, looking like he just stepped off the Terminator 2 set and walked straight in front of the camera.
Jeff’s mum is a big movie star, but a freak electrocution accident on set leads to her ending up a bit less alive than she’d probably like (i.e. not at all) so his dad decides it’s probably best for he and Jeff to leave Hollywood and its bad memories behind them and start a new life elsewhere. Continue reading “Pet Sematary II (1992) review”
It’s that festive time of the year where giving is more important than receiving… or at least that’s what I try to tell my loved ones when I’m trying to get more Blu-rays from them for Christmas.
That’s why I’m giving you a Christmas present.
Last week I hit a delightful wee milestone, in that my ebook That Was A Bit Mental Volume 1 hit 600 downloads. For a wee book that has had zero publicity other than a few tweets, I’m delighted with this.
To celebrate, and to get you in the Christmas spirit, I’m giving you my follow-up ebook, That Was A Bit Mental Volume 2.
Yes, just giving you it. For free. Continue reading “TWABM Vol 2 eBook – FREE for a limited time!”
Director: David DeCoteau
Starring: Morgan Fairchild, Brian Bremer, Christopher Wolf, Sara Suzanne Brown, Michele Matheson, Don Dowe
Also known as: Virgin Hunters
“We come from your future. Our mission here is to prevent a corporate takeover of the planet, and the banning of sex between consenting adults.” (Naldo, Test Tube Teens From The Year 2000)
Let’s face it, even if you don’t know anything about this film you already know why I decided to watch and review it.
Yes, I’m a sucker for a great film title, and if my rating at the end of each review was based on titles alone this little beauty would find itself in the Hall Of Fame with gusto.
Sadly however, the film itself doesn’t quite live up to the heady expectations set by its name – how could it ever expect to? – and as such the number of Trevor Moorhouse heads you see at the bottom is lower than one would have hoped.
Here’s another thing I didn’t expect: it turns out that rather than the comedy sci-fi film I was expecting, this is actually supposed to be a softcore porn film. Oh. Continue reading “Test Tube Teens From The Year 2000 (1994) review”
Director: David DeCoteau
Starring: Guy Rolfe, Richard Lynch, Ian Abercrombie, Aron Eisenberg
“Herr Toulon has developed a method of animating his puppets without string. It’s as if they were alive.” (Lt Stein, Puppet Master III)
When you’ve got a film about killer toys you can only go so far with it before the concept loses all sense of terror.
The minds behind the Child’s Play films realised this by the end of the serious-but-iffy third film, following it up with the more comedy-focused Bride Of Chucky instead.
Full Moon, the studio behind the Puppet Master series, realised it sooner than this. By the end of Puppet Master II, in which the killer puppets are double-crossed by their evil owner, the audience is expected to start feeling sympathy for them.
Puppet Master III, then, takes things one step further and makes the puppets outright good guys. A horror film in which the killer dolls are the heroes? Who could the villains possibly be, other than Nazis or something? Continue reading “Puppet Master III: Toulon’s Revenge (1991) review”
Director: Adam Marcus
Starring: Kane Hodder, Kari Keegan, John D LeMay, Steven Williams
STEVEN – “Duke! The part about being reborn through a Voorhees woman, does it have to be a living woman?”
DUKE – “No.”
STEVEN – “Duke, that thing is in the basement with Jessica’s dead mother.”
DUKE – “Mother of God.”
Here’s the story. After Friday The 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan died on its arse and drew the lowest ever box office in the series’ history, Paramount was done with it.
Step forward New Line Cinema, who owned A Nightmare On Elm Street. New Line had been itching to make a film pitting their own Freddy Krueger against Jason for a while, but the fact that they owned Freddy while Paramount owned Jason meant it was a logistical nightmare.
New Line’s solution was impeccable: buy Jason from Paramount at a low price while his name is mud at the studio, make him popular again then make the Freddy vs Jason film everyone wants to see. Continue reading “Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday (1993) review”
Director: David Allen
Starring: Elizabeth Maclellan, Collin Bernsen, Steve Welles, Greb Webb
“No one escapes.” (Andre Toulon, Puppet Master II)
I’ve got a bit of a soft spot for the Puppet Master series, as you’ll already know if you read my review of the first film a while back.
This second outing for Full Moon Pictures’ wooden wonders offers more of the same, with stop-motion puppetry, supernatural skullduggery and sub-standard acting the order of the day.
The movie begins with our anti-heroes, still living at the Bodega Bay Inn, facing a dilemma. You see, the reason they’re alive in the first place is because their titular puppet master, Andre Toulon, developed a serum that could bring life to inanimate objects.
The problem is, the serum’s running out, and Andre Toulon pebble-dashed a wall with his brains in the ’40s when he shot himself to avoid capture by the Nazis, so if they can’t get any more serum soon they’ll be a bit fucked. Continue reading “Puppet Master II (1990) review”