Last Scream For The Ward

I didn’t get a chance to talk about some recent horror flicks I’ve seen on this week’s podcast, so here goes.

Scream 4. I remember being genuinely shocked at the first Scream film in 1996 and even the 2 sequels (in 1997, and 2000) weren’t bad at all. There was the feeling that no-one was safe and they were, and still are, smart slasher films. I can see the point of attempting a fourth film, as Hollywood loves a good film that can rely on nostalgia and a known series. This just didn’t do it for me though. It still felt like a ’90s film, and wasn’t as shocking, seeing as horror films have given us Saw and Hostel levels of gore in the intervening years. If they killed Neve Campbell, then I’d be shocked. The, “New Decade. New Rules” premise/tagline is a good one, but the story doesn’t live up to that potential. Oh, and Courtney Cox’s facelift just seems wrong.

The Last Exorcism was a nice surprise. A found footage film released last year it follows a disillusioned evangelical preacher/exorcist who visits a farmer’s family and meets his match. It’s a slow build, but a good one.

For other similarly scary fake doco films, check out Rec (remade in America as Quarantine), Interview with the Assassin, or one of the scariest films I’ve ever seen, Aussie film Lake Mungo.

The Ward should be avoided. Amber Heard plays a woman in a mental asylum in the ’60s and meets a few fellow inmates, who aren’t that interesting, just like the rest of this predictable film directed by John Carpenter (The Thing, Halloween). It tries to be a suspenseful horror film with a twist, but it’s really none of those things.

Walking and Halls Montages

Some very impressive editing here, consisting of clips from a bunch of films showing various characters walking and running and a similar one focused on hallways. Trust me, both are better than they sound.


The Woman in Black Trailer

Now this is how you make a creepy trailer. Starring Harry Potter’s Daniel Radcliffe and opening in February is this remake of a 1989 film (and also a book and stageplay), made by the rejuvenated Hammer Films, who also made the great Let Me In remake.

Frozen Review

Just a quick one to say that this film is great and you should see it. There’s been far too many bad thriller/horror films out in the last few years, but occasionally a stripped down, surprising one will stand out, such as Open Water, Descent and this little beauty. Apart from Shawn Ashmore (Iceman from the X-Men trilogy), there are’t any recognisable actors, though all 3 of the main cast, which includes Emma Bell and Kevin Zegers do a great job. It almost veers towards laughable territory thanks to the frequent hysterics, but the characters (two lovers, and his best mate) are well rounded and sympathetic.

Having the 3 stuck on an abandoned ski lift for the majority of a film sounds like a boring premise, but writer/director Adam Green (Hatchet) does a superb job of keeping the plot diverse, throwing in enough elements such as humorous pop culture references, almost rescues and some hungry wolves that you won’t know what to expect, and I was certainly surprised by Green’s harsh treatment of his characters, considering there’s only 3 of them. Frozen is suspenseful and very entertaining and goes to show how a well crafted film can be made from such a basic concept.

Check the trailer out below and the film out now.

Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark Monsters

A couple of good trailers, and hopefully good films, have been released recently.

Gareth Edwards’ film, simply entitled Monsters, seems almost like  a one man band, as Edwards is the writer, director and visual effects artist. Inspired by Jurassic Park, the film follows 2 people as they traverse a quarantined part of Mexico, while the Mexican and U.S armies battle a bunch of creatures. It opens on October 29 in America and in November 12 in the UK.

Guillermo del Toro has carved out quite the niche for himself in the last few years, as director (the 2 Hellboy films), writer (Splice), producer (The Orphanage) or as all 3 (The Devil’s Backbone, Pan’s Labyrinth). His next film, Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark stars Katie Holmes and Aussie Guy Pearce. Co-written and produced by del Toro, the film tells of a young girl who discovers monsters in her family’s new house. It opens on January 21 next year. Effectively creepy trailer of the film, which is a remake of a 1973 TV movie, below.

Blu-Ray Alien Anthology Trailer

Now I really want a Blu-Ray player. This 6 disc set comes out on October 26. Complete with the 4 films, plus a massive 60 hours (!) of extra features, this will make you drool indeed. Let’s not forget that Ridley Scott is prepping 2 prequels to the original film too, which won’t star Ripley, and will be set about 30 years before Alien. The first prequel should be out in 2011 or 12.

Devil Trailer

This looks interesting. Co-written by M. Night Shyamalan (The Sixth Sense, Signs, The Happening) and the first of a proposed trilogy, Devil is about a group of people trapped in an elevator, one of whom is the devil in disguise.  Inspired by And Then There Were None (formerly known as Ten Little Indians), Agatha Christie’s best selling  novel, the film seems to have a good mix of supernatural, drama and thriller moments. It opens September 17.

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