Category Archives: Thriller

Choose (2010)

Director:Marcus Graves.
Starring. Katheryn Winnick, Kevin Pollak, Nicholas Tucci. USA. 1h 23m.

The preview and adverts for this made it look like a cross between Se7en (1995) and WAz, dark and broody, crazy serial killer, but this dabbles with the atmosphere it’s really there’s more daddy daughter bonding going on and detracts from the “fun”.

The young and wonderful Fiona Wagner (Winnick) is studying for her masters degree in Journalism and is struggling to deal with her mother’s suicide, bonding with her father Tom Wagner (Pollak) )is hard as he’s busy busting crooks but a new serial killer starts to bring them together, chuck in the expertise of her therapist and they morph into a crime hunting trio. Sadly Fiona does a lot of the leg work. The killer is deranged and places people in tricky situations, one is a layer who’s killed by his teenage daughter, she has the choice of killing him or being killed along with her family. Another case is when a pianist is forced to choose between losing his fingers or hearing. Continue reading Choose (2010)

Garden Of Love (2003)

Director: Olaf Ittenbach.
Starring.Natacza Boon, James Matthews-Pyecka, Daryl Jackson. Germany. 1h 26m.

It’s quite easy to slate a film just because of it’s shoddy acting and low budget but then there are a few golden films where we actually really adore them just for those reasons, I want to name the Room (2003) but really I don’t know why it’s’ the best of the worst.. but it is. Garden of Love has some pretty bad qualities, poor production being the more noticeable but there is a damn fine slasher movie somewhere in the mess. Continue reading Garden Of Love (2003)

Bundy: An American Icon (2008)

Director:Michael Feifer .
Starring.Corin Nemec, Kane Hodder, Jen Nikolaisen. USA. 1h 27m.

There will never be a serial killer movie which really gets at all the nitty gritty, ugly details of a serial killer and/or their killings. I’m pretty certain of that, but now and again something will try and trip that line and at least give us a decent movie. While I really enjoy this film and watch it regularly; i have to admit that it’s not actually a brilliant film. At times it’s a bit bland. It certainly doesn’t give me the insight I crave for but I’m in a minority here, not everyone is interested in serial killers and most people just want to know enough to say they are aware of but they don’t want to see the real face of a killer looking back at them from a TV movie. Continue reading Bundy: An American Icon (2008)

Eyeborgs (2009)

Director:  Richard Clabaugh
Starring: Adrian Paul, Megan Blake, Luke Eberl, Danny Trejo, USA. 1h 42m

It’s a bit shabby and cheap but the message is poignant and makes the movie bearable. The budget is low, which you’ll fathom from the cast, but the ideas steam right from 1970’s paranoid sci fi but sadly those retro stories all seem to be coming true which is what sparked my interest in watching this film again. With proposals of using more drones due to the decrease of police on the streets, reminded me of a short story from Philip K Dick about small “justice” robots that enforced the law, but through their AI the results start to become more deadly as the bots start to rethink what crime is. Continue reading Eyeborgs (2009)

Maggie (2015)

Director:Henry Hobson .
Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Abigail Breslin, Joely Richardson, USA. 1h 35m.

One of the staple factors in any zombie film tries to answer what we would do with our loved ones, this is fully inspected and dissected in this unusual emo movie. All rational thoughts are out of the window and a deeply sympathetic view is adapted the traditional zombie movie into something quite unbelievable but it does raise some questions, questions we know we’d never have to ask. Continue reading Maggie (2015)

Proof of the Devil (2014) AKA The Butcher of Louisiana

Director: Paul Catalanotto.
Starring: Lisa Mackel Smith, Sam Cobean, Michael Bienvenu,  USA. 1h 15m.

After a string of murders, a young man named Jesse returns home to finish off his parents, the dramatic scenes of him butchering his father lead to his infamous serial killer profile name of the Butcher, the sketchy found footage shows him doing the unthinkable but promising not to hurt his mother while he moves around like a puppet and commences the killing. After a short trial and while proclaiming his innocence, he’s executed by lethal injection. Years later his mother invites a film crew to document her raising the devil in order to prove that demonic possession exists that this is what happened to her son. It might seem of a strange way to prove his innocence but it makes for a brilliant documentary and the crew can’t turn down such an amazing opportunity.

Based on the true events of serial killer Jesse Winters.

Despite having a pretty appealing story the film is executed so badly, the idea a mother trying to prove her son’s innocence by attempting to become possessed by a demon, is fairly new (let me know if there are any other films that run along such ideas). But after the introduction the project is very mundane and offers nothing else new to the found footage or possession genre. You can literally tick off everything you’d expect to see, so don’t look out for anything new or interesting, the acting is pretty mediocre and the award to to the worst actor goes to Kristen Merritt who is the medical back up and strolls around in her scrubs speaking as is she’s on some heavy medication herself.

The mother, Kate Winters (Lisa Mackel Smith) gets herself checked by the medical team, psychiatrist and miss boring, while the film crew sets up cameras, then she starts performing a “ritual” where she sacrifices some animals and starts painting the walls with blood. This fails, so she starts to weaken herself by self harming, and then strange things start to happen, obviously this is all caught by the cameras and the team (despite filming everything) miss a lot of what’s going on until it’s too late.

It plays out like a high school project, that’s disrespectful as a lot of school projects have some imagination and creativity involved. But this film is just dull.  Writer/ Director Paul Catalanotto has a long history of documentaries and this should have worked as it plays out like a fake documentary but it seems he needs to be surprised by the unknown and can’t document but he can’t write or direct new materials.

If you are interested in found footage or possession films then it might be something to watch just to gauge the genre but for me once was enough. It’s so crap it’s on youtube and no one has removed it.

 

 

 

Rating 2/10

RThe Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005), Paranormal Activity (2007) The Veil I (2016)
L – Possession Films

The Sweet Body of Deborah/The Body/Married to Kill (1968)

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Director: Romolo Guerrieri.
Starring: Carroll Barker, Jean Sorel, Luigi Pistilli. Italy/France. 1h 35m.

A couple return to Geneva from their honeymoon flaunting around various parts of Europe, the rich Deborah (Barker), and beautiful lover Marcel (Sorel) are only in town for one night before things start to become strange. Marcel notices an old friend, Philip, who totally blanks him in a nightclub, after catching up with him again during the evening, Philip announces that Marcels former fiance Susan is dead and it’s all his fault, despite her death being a suicide Philip still strongly blames Marcel for her death. Continue reading The Sweet Body of Deborah/The Body/Married to Kill (1968)

The Cry of the Prostitute (1972)

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Director: Andrea Bianchi
Starring: Henry Silva, Barbara Bouchet, Vittorio Sanipoli, Mario Landi, Fausto Tozzi . Italy. 1h 26m.

I adore Italian cinema and the more violent the better, this was off my radar and I suck for taking so long to see it.

A family are stopped at a border patrol, their son is passed out from travel sickness but they are ushered through, they crash the car and everyone is killed, but the coroner notices that the boy was dead prior to the crash, crude stitches are unpicked and drugs are removed from the tiny cadaver. Continue reading The Cry of the Prostitute (1972)

Oasis of Fear (1971)

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Director: Umberto Lenzi.
Starring:Irene Papas, Ornella Muti, Ray Lovelock. Italy. 1h 30m.

What a chance find in CEX helps me find one of the missing items from my Shameless collection, they can’t be all that bad right!?

A couple of hippies are bumming around creating an artistic mayhem until they get caught at a gas station for trying to sell porn photos, they go on the run but soon run out of petrol. Luckily for them, they are near a lush house and grounds (the Oasis) and try their luck at the house, initially all they discover is a frightened woman awaiting the arrival of her husband but what other secrets are locked away in this house!? The hippy couple are used to having the upper hand and out numbering the fragile woman they try to befriend her while also trying to rip her off. But gradually she starts showing her true colours and can play them at their own game, be it fueled with erotica or intense conversation she’s quite a vixen and a cat and mouse games unravels everyone’s plans. Continue reading Oasis of Fear (1971)

Wer (2013)

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Director : William Brent Bell
Starring :  A.J. Cook,  Brian Scott O’Connor, Simon Quarterman, Sebastian Roché,Vik Sahay . USA. 1h 29m.

A modern day werewolf movie that awkwardly slots into the found footage genre. From the director who gave us another found footage horror only a year before, Devil Inside (2012) and sadly this film makes lots of the same mistakes but it also quite enjoyable.
There aren’t many werewolf found footage movies, in fact I can’t think of any, but this film isn’t pure found footage,  it’s  just a bog standard film with a few clips filmed via security cameras for added unrest.

Starting out from cam footage, a family are attacked by an unknown ferocious beast, if you hadn’t seen a trailer (or read this review) you’d have thought it was a bear on meth, it’s such a violent scene. Later through news clips it’s announced that Talan Gwynek (Brian Scott O’Connor) has been arrested for the murders. This is when Kate Moore (A. J Cook) steps in, to protect Talan as he’s not had a fair representation. While interviewing the curious man she starts to realise that he might just be capable of the murders, it’s not until after Talan is tested for Porphyria that Kate and her team including Gavin Flemyng (Simon Quarterman) start to realise just what they are faced with and how the werewolf curse is already affecting them…
Continue reading Wer (2013)