Tag Archives: 2011

The Gate

the gate short

https://youtu.be/yqyQmecxub4

Duration 8:19

Dir: Matt Westrup /UK?/ 2011
Link: http://mattwestrup.com
Without any blood or gore this poignant short from young director Matt Westrup slowly unfolds a fairly realistic and dangerous. In the form of a private hearing/inquest Dr William Ackerman (John Mawson) details his research into a appearance of mutants in and around London. in between his presentation to Under Secretary Johnson (Robert Rowe). We’re treated to some very stunning shots of advanced robotic police in a futuristic London, these shots are more than stunning, they are damned perfect. Westrup’s expertise is visual effects and his handiwork can be seen on his site and in films such as Underworld Evolution (2006). There is a bit of bullshit at the end about medicines that are not being screened that could cause these mutations and while it’s fake we are all aware of bogus drugs being available online and the dangers of bath salts, so who’s to say that in the future that we won’t find something more damaging to the human physiology!? But those creatures, how fucking freaky are they. It opens up  whole kettle of fears, not knowing who could turn next, not knowing if you’ve taken something yourself? It’s a really good short, it has great effects, great pacing and tells a awesome science fiction story.


AOFA08
R: 8/10

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One Winters Night

One Winters Night 2

http://youtu.be/aP4CL4GSIAE
Duration 7.07

Dir: Emlyn Boyle/USA?/2011

Accomplished artist and poet Emlyn Boyle has created this dark and delightful animation set to a self written poem, in the style of Tim Burton or Gorey, comes a simplistic yet haunting gothic take. Of a creature who creeps and stalks it’s victims by night.

One Winters Night

The story is reminiscent of European folklore,  especially the Scandinavian tales of various forest creatures although European stories rarely have a happy ending, on the other side One Winters Night will leave you guessing what might happen next, I adore it, it really does show you how to expand art through different mediums and that you don’t need to be an expert in Maya to do it. The rustic charm runs throughout and I hope to see more from Emlyn.

07

 

 

R:7/10

Séance : The Summoning (2011)

Seance the summoning

 

Séance : The Summoning (Horror, Thriller, Supernatual 2011) (18) D: Alex Wright: W: Alex Wright: C: Bobby Campo, Nazneem Contactor, Chris Olivero, Devon Ogden 1h 25m. USA.

TAGLINE : Dare to Play

Synopsis: Four Friends decide to record themsleves having a séance. When they summon a demon by mistake they’ll have to find a way to drive the demon out before it destroys them all.

Occult thriller with a few cheesy predicable scares in-between the illogical and shoddily researched scenes. A group of young friends decide to record themselves having séance, the head honcho Eva (Nazneen Contactor) is trying to prove that is a supernatural arranges for her friends including a born again christian and budding film maker to go along for the ride, when one of the group starts showing disturbing signs and the group end up fighting for their lives or souls.. I’m not entirely sure as the movie is all over the show.

 

As much as I adore horror it’s films like that make it hard for me to defend the genre. The fore and effects are good quality, that can’t be denied, they look good and the cinematography is spot on giving some interesting shots and is a little experimental at times, although the acting , script, plot, occult references, situations are all trashy.

 

The film start out with a christian getting her tarot read but a bargain basement Marie Laveau who later casts a wiccan circle to start a séance over a ouija board. All the typical shit plays out, there is a lot of screaming a LOT of screaming it seems to be utilised as an indication that the scene is supposed to be scary.   While the movie takes ages to warm up when the plot finally gets started everything becomes back-story as if it’s being written as the movie was mid production. Suddenly the sceptic has a dodgy past and more and more gets dredged up from the past. Another annoying factor is that the film keeps switching between live action and handy cam; I guess it wasn’t decided on the format?

 

All of the gore scenes no matter the level of artist effects are all show horned into the story and are mostly unnecessary, along with all the inaccurate bullshit it’s hard to sit through at times.

 

The story itself has potential, even as a low budget movie, it could have been done so much more, the atmosphere is brooding, as most of the film is set in the morgue. The gore scenes are pleasant enough but the build up to them is dismal and seem to all end with a howl.

 

Ultimately what it offers is wiped out by the crap you have to trawl though to find it, whatever it is.. I’m still lost as to if they summoned a demon/devil/spirit/entity/ghost? I don’t think anyone knew in the first place. Basically it’s just not worth it.

 

 

 AOFA02

 

Rating : 2/10

 

R: Dead Mans Hand (2007), Séance (2006), I am ZoZo (2012), Haunting in Connecticut (2009), Long Time Dead (2002)

 

Q: I could have made you a queen!
TIL: You don’t need to be a priest to preform an exorcism, cutting is a sign of demonic possession.
BS: This film doesn’t have one.
L: Ouija Films, Occult Films
DGI: Knock a shot for every scream! Then keep drinking until the movie is good!

 

Kill List (2011)

image

Kill List (Crime, Horror, Thriller, Supernatural 2011) (18) D: Ben Wheatley: P: W: Amy Jump, Ben Wheatley: C:Neil Maskell, MyAnna Buring, Michael Smiliey, Struan Rodger 1h 35m. UK.

Synopsis: Nearly a year after a botched job, a hit man takes a new assignment with the promise of a big payoff for three killings, What starts off as an easy task soon unravels, sending the killer into the heart of darkness.

Nearly a year after a disastrous job; a hitman Jay (Maskel) and his trusty sidekick Gal (Smilie) take on a new assignment with the promise of a big payoff for a mere three killings. What begins as an effortless task soon unravels; sending the killers on a wild psychological roller coaster.

Kill List opens as a fairly mundane drama set around a dysfunctional and violent couple and a quiet often ignored son. Gradually the plot descends into bloody gore, shrewd psychological disturbances, occult and a healthy lashing of “thrill  kill”.

It encapsulates the downward spiral of a semi retired hitman, We being to feel sympathy for Jay, his mission in Kiev and now potters around his house imagining himself as having a bad back, pissing off his spouse Shel (Burning) and the two constantly switch between love and hateful outbursts over Jay’s inactivity and the families poor financial situation. The pace starts to sharpen once Jay finds a new contract and a mysterious character known simply as The Client (Rogers) offers the duo a 3 person kill list during an unsettling meeting in a hotel.

At this point the pair start to drift apart as Jay starts to rage more and loses control and his grip on reality and the walls close in.

The screenplay is very characteristic of Wheatly/Jump’s style of film like Sightseers (2012) and Down Terrace (2009). Filmed in a similar manner of a fly on the wall documentary, the cinematography follows suit with shaky cam and close ups, zooming in on the graphic violent scenes, all of this is backed up with raw and unprepared script sporadic soundtrack, sometimes holding up and allowing space for deep personal scenes.

The acting is brilliant, it looks very realistic which is the entire angle of this movie, its main point of driving home the message that this could happen to anyone is to see it happening to people you can easily identify with. It feels as if Wheatley is bringing this story to the viewer. trying to force them to digest everything for themselves. This identification with the main cast helps pull you into the movie. Suddenly Jay isn’t James Bond, he’s doing what you would in that situation, but when he starts going off the rails does this mean you could also. For an example when Jay and Gal find some disturbing videos, Gal is very passive and Jay goes off all half cocked, which is what most people would do in his place but would they really press it as hard as him?

Wheatly and Jump work together so well, constantly they are producing characters that could live on your street but who have this dark and sinister backgrounds. The quiet family down the street are revealed as trained killers and yet blend seamlessly, everyone has a hidden face, everyone is hiding a secret.

With its raw and uncompromising dialogue, Kill List hits hard, it’s raw with a gloomy undercurrent, you have no where to hide. Combining the difficult family drama such as Once Were Warriors (1994) with a brutal hitman action movie and topping it off with constantly surreal occult references the melting pot is set to dish up a curious and unique movie.


09

Rating : 9/10
AOFAPD

R: Sightseers (2012), A Field in England (2015) Devil Rides Out (1968) Borderlands (2013), Rosemarys Baby (1968)
Q: Gal “I fucking hate dirty soap”
BS: Some of the most realistic blood is scene in the hotel scene when Jay gets his hand cut. The brutal killing of he Librarian is very gruesome ans violent!
OST: Nb. Sharksong used in tunnel chase.
L: Selected Occult Movies, Hitmen Movies, Modern British Thrillers
5B: Ben Wheatley, Michael Smiliey, Neil Maskell
DGI: Chug a bear for each of the killings..

Kisha

Black Water Gospel

image

http://youtu.be/vVkDrIacHJM

Duration 9.33

Dir: Bo Mathorne /UK/2011
Links: http://bomathorne.blogspot.co.uk/

A god fearing desert community in a western wasteland lead by a perverse minister who controls his flock through fear and promises of heaven are suddenly faced with a mysterious dark silent stranger who descends on the town. But why…

The animation is backed with a soulful song by Justin Cross called Drink the water in some renditions (http://youtu.be/wXFK82TGh7c) . Otherwise you have a great sounding ost and realistic effects.

image

Graphically the film is very uniquely characterised by an urban kustom graphic style of art,  enhanced by superb 3D renders  its incredibly rustic and vibrant in movements and structure. The clarity of the graphics are beautful ,  style and atmosphere is top notch.

The story playes along a similar plot of Needful Things (1993) the main character is dark and sinister. The top hat and wide smile reminds me of Tom Petty, basically a devil who descends apon the town to feed, but there is a twist.

There is a great story here, it harbours a lot of moral questions worth paying attention to. It’s beautful to watch an the option of having it all set to a stunning song. You just cant go wrong, Mathorne seriously needs to make more of this kinda magic.

10

R: 10/10

Kisha

Gnomeo and Juliette (2011)

GNOMEO AND JULIETTE – (Animation, Comedy, 2011) (PGD: Kelly Asbury C: James McAvoy, Emily Blunt, Maggie Smith 1h 40m  UK 

The neighboring gardens of Montague and Capulet are at war, but the gnomes, Gnomeo and Juliet, are in love.

2011_gnomeo_and_juliet_004

Yeah I still watch cartoons. Pixar garden version of Romeo and Juliette if you didn’t guess. It’s a kids film but it’s funny as f*ck! I love the flamingo, the teeny rabbits and the kitty clipper.. No something I’d expect anyone on my blog to really watch so i won’t go into any details.

06

This must be the place (2011)

*THIS MUST BE THE PLACE – (Comedy, Drama 2011) (15D: Paolo Sorrentino C: Sean Penn,Frances McDormand 1h 58m  Italy | France | Ireland 

Cheyenne, a retired rock star living off his royalties in Dublin, returns to New York City to find the man responsible for a humiliation suffered by his recently deceased father during W.W.II.

thismustbetheplace

I vaguely remember seeing pictures of Sean Penn around dressed up as Robert Smith of the Cure, and people talking about a Cure movie then I heard that it wasn’t a Cure film at all.. so I never bothered with it, but Sean Penn, that hair.. news of an amazing OST. Eventually I had to check it out. It’s one of those passages of life kinda stories. Cheyenne is a fragile retired pop star living in Ireland being all glam and under the radar, When he gets news that his father has died, soon the story changes the quiet recluse pop star into a nazi hunter! Yeah it’s an unusual story which reminds me of the bizarre and surreal road trip that Wristcutters Story turned into. I adore the characters that he meets along the way, each one seems to be very carefully thought out and superbly acted. All owing themselves to Cheyennes own personal recovery, making amends with his late father and family history and dealing with the suicides of two fans. Penn plays a goth pretty well, I like the variations in dress and aversion for society while playing them.
08

Bunnyman (2011)

BUNNYMAN – (Horror, Gore, 2011) (18) D/W/P: Carl Lindbergh. 1h 30m. USA

Another group of teens lost in the woods…

rubbing the locals up the wrong way and getting slaughtered. I REALLY loved the bunnyman character, he was such a charmer, and is probably going to make it onto my adorable horror characters list. He’s just so flufffy!!

bunnyman

The film is poorly acted and at times can drag a simple scene out for ever…I think with the intention of it being a moment of suspense? But it’s just annoying. How long would you honestly stand in front of a truck shouting at the driver!? If they were kids from my neighbourhood the truck would be on bricks in seconds.

What it does to make up for the annoying boring parts is to chuck in a bit of a scare from the Bunnyman who is similar to Leatherface (Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)) .. A huge deadly oversized kid, running in now and again wrecking the place up and keeping the hipsters on their toes.

Keep an eye out for a comical froggy bouncing leapfrog rape scene!?!?

Really this is only good if you have a lotta beer in your system. Nothing is new here, it steals from a million other films and real life stories like R : The Bunny Game (2010), the Toybox Killer  David Parker Ray and every other hick killing city boy movies.. Pig Hunt (2008), Deliverance (1972) , Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) etc etc etc, there really isn’t anything new here, and sadly what has been presented was done poorly.

joe-bunnyman-2-chainsaw

Lets hope things pick up for part 2!

Q:I know daddies genes left you a little special but if you f*ck this up I will beat you into next week.”

3/10

03

Man Borg (2011)

MANBORG

(Action, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, Horror, Sci Fi, 2011) (15) D : Steven Kostanski W : Jeremy Gillespie. 1h. Canada.

A Soldier, brought back to life as a cyborg, fights alongside a band of adventurers against demon hordes in a dystopian future.

TAGLINE : Revenge is Back.

Basic plot is this.. in the not so distant future there is a war between man kind and hell!! Our lead is killed… cut scene, in a the future he awakens and Hell have won the war, there are monsters and hell beasts everywhere terrorising mankind in every way, out hero has been spliced with machine and must fight in an arena with his new found friends to conquer Lord Draculon…

manborg21

When I saw the preview for this film it looked like a low budget version of Hardware (1990) mixed with claymation work… which would work for me.. When I started watching it became apparent I was watching the boyhood dream film made by a bunch of 7 year old kids from the 80’s high on meths… and that works for me.

If you could imagine a few kids with a couple of manga toys, a robot toy melted to a GI Joe doll, a generic kung fu toy and a modified skeletor figure.. playing a game and making things up as they go along and filming it.. that is this movie! I think you can hear them making light saber and kapow noises in the sound effects!?

If you love pulp films, Troma or just inventive comic stuff,  if  you watched Liquid Television, or listened to Gwar you’ll understand how great this film is. Big budgets and expensive effects don’t tell a story. It’s the personality and character of the cast that can carry a great film.

After the initial shock sets in.. You gotta love Manborg! It’s one of those movies that’s so bad it’s good. Not to be taken seriously, settle back, drink some beers, have a smoke and enjoy this with your friends, it’s only an hour long, you can watch it twice!

Q : “You dick!”

 

“Shall we finish cooking this delicious meal?”

“I just wanna die”

“We have so much in common”

R: Mutant Chronicles (2008), Lexx (1997), Power Rangers, Liquid Television (www.liquidtelevision.com)  

TIL : No matter how evil a “thing” is, it can still fall in love.

BS : Any scene with the Kung Fu guy  who’s actually called “#1 Man” who had a strange dubbed voice which makes me giggle like a kid every time.. I need help.

9/10

09

Travelers (2011)

TRAVELERS

(Thriller,Sport, 2011) (18) D/W: Kris McManus P: Alex Edwards, Brian A Levine – 1h 24m. UK

TAGLINE: It’s in the blood.

Four friends set out on a motorcycle adventure weekend, clocking up miles in an attempt to outrun their urban lifestyles…

travellers

Basics is that a  group of arrogant city boys go out camping in the wilderness on their pretty motorbikes, insult some locals about being inbred and attack a caravan which they discover a dead body is inside.. or what they presume is a dead body.. The owners of the caravan (obviously Irish Gypsies) come back and seek their revenge on their home being attacked.. the dead body gets up and it turns out it’s one of the Irish guys girlfriend/sister (probably both, we are talking about the rednecks of the British Isles here) who isn’t best pleased at her home being kicked in but takes mercy on the boys as her bothers/lovers deal out some punishment. The city boys find themselves on the run from the Irish and are being picked off one by one, and also manage to get themselves pulled into the Irish fighting scene as a redemption for their deeds! There is a lot going on in this film!

This movie for what it’s worth could have been an hour shorter. Yeah 24 minutes to tell the story then maybe an hour of real Irish Gypsy fighting! Saying that the fight scenes are pretty ruthless. Okay I’m being a bit harsh, it is a good story.. but I had problems with it..

It’s let down by the lack of acting and dialogue, but the depth of the plot keeps you interested enough to watch it through but afterwards I personally felt a bit cheated. Which is actually how I felt with another of McManus’s movies Dead in France (2012).

In a similar vein as Deliverance (1972) , Pig Hunt (2008) or more accurately Devils Bridge (2010), this movie tells the story of backwoods meets metroman with devastating consequences which in itself is nothing new but this has a slightly different twist on the subject which is inventive but could have been executed a bit better.

The only differences between this and Devils Bridge (2010) is a bit of a Shrooms (style twist to it. In addition to this one of the city boys is from a traveller background so kinda knows all about the life. So if he did know.. why the hell did he want to get back and why didn’t he protect his friends? Douchebag!

travellers-still

It’s just below average, I think with a bit of tweaking and more emphasis on the twist/fighting and maybe some better production this could be an amazing movie. I want to like it but… I do really appreciate lo-fi British movies, there is a lot of creativity going on in this scene, it just needs a gentle push and it could be great again.

R : Knuckle (2011) which is more of a documentary, highly entertaining. Deliverance (1972) , Pig Hunt (2008)

5/10

05