I had heard of this movie for awhile and got to see it, and it was a disappointment. The first few minutes start off with some promise with some interesting special effects, but after that, there's not much going on. I kept waiting to actually see the alien besides his little flying devices, but what there was, was a lot of running around the woods at night, and talking about the alien. I'm a fan of many low budget movies but this mostly bored me. It has some good ideas, and a few nice moments such as when the couple near the end is staying in the house, the girl is looking for the guy, and then she find him with one of the alien things on him, and then the alien actually appears. The last 10 minutes is probably the best part of the whole movie. The alien finally gets some decent screen time, and a fight, with actual action happens. I rated it a 3 out of 10, for being too boring, and below-average, even for a movie of its budget.
The revenge setup is well conceived as a framework, though the behavior of Marty's tormentors is ridiculously over the top, it made me want them to all die really badly. There were a few big problems I had with its execution however that ruin the whole damn thing. First most of the music was just terrible. I suppose it matched the seemingly intended goofiness but I wish they'd taken a more serious approach with more ominous music. I also thought the mask sucked, an old man with a jester hat, come on, why not go with a skullheaded jester to match the cover more.
Just about all the kills are pretty creative, the problem is Marty seems to teleport like Jason in the later Fridays, throughout the school grounds setting up elaborate scheme after elaborate scheme hardly being seen at all. It makes things unrealistic which makes sense in the end but I would have preferred if they'd played things straight. Finally the reason I won't bother to give this a vote seeing as it already has a 4 is the total cop-out ending. As if it hadn't been made goofy and over the top enough it turns out everything that just happened didn't really happen at all, the whole it was all a dream shtick I've grown far too tiresome of. If only they'd ended it right when everyone's dead, Munro actually gets killed off after a overly dragged out chase scene that goes on way too long, and Marty declares victory, I would have liked it way more and given it an easy, above average 6, for the creative gory kills and the revenge plot that had potential if only it'd been given more serious treatment. As is, its just decent. I would have preferred it to not been handled as such a joke.
***Possible minor spoilers for Dawn Of The Dead remake as well*** As a huge fan of the original trilogy, I had been greatly anticipating Land, which more than anything is probably the biggest reason I see it as disappointing in the end. Land is solid, but can't hold a candle to any of the original 3, and I'm not sure it ever could have, 20 years is a long time, and the first 3 are just too damn classic. I can't help but think that concessions and self-censorship were in play by Romero to get this to be more mainstream studio box office friendly.
Some of my major problems with it were that it was too short. It feels entirely too rushed. The path to the finale is set in the first 10 minutes, there's not nearly enough downtime before the grand zombie march on the city. Opening with the rich living seemingly normally and then slowly revealing the external gruesome reality would have been far more effective. Another issue of disagreement I have is with the casting of Simon Baker and Asia Argento as the lead protagonists which may have been out of Romero's hands but they come off as contrived Hollywood action heroes as opposed to the more realistic, past gritty, unassuming, ordinary type Romero heroes, which only the likes of Charlie seems to represent, while Cholo is probably the best developed and conceived of the entire cast.
The security of the city's perimeter and inner regions is unclear and at the end is a farce. It had some decent buildup with the electrified fence and all the army guys and the underground tram, but then is made a joke of. I understand the zombies have to get in, but breaking through that initial cheap wooden board with a meat cleaver, throwing themselves against an ordinary, flimsy chain link fence, and somehow totally circumventing the electrified fence and overrunning what should have been considerable firepower was weak. Its a wonder they weren't totally overrun much earlier in their existence with such incompetence. Not to mention worst of all how they walk across a damn river. Lacking both the intelligence and coordination to swim, they are shown falling in, mysteriously rising, and then all of a sudden wading out. That must have been a very shallow river with very little distance to cross. How that was ever considered secure is ridiculous. Other inconsistencies such as the value of money and why the underprivileged condense in squalor when there appears to be a near-empty whole rest of the city featuring high rises have been mentioned numerously.
I also fail to buy into the ending, where the super socially conscious and the audience is to believe, clairvoyant, Big Daddy, leads the horde to devour mostly the rich (while its the lower class that does all the killing), with I suppose the hope of having the less fortunate take control who will be kinder to them? And when moving amongst the zombies, they would actually not eat them as long as they were not attacked? Or was the intention of the assault simply as a matter of general vengeance, leave us alone? They come in, overturn the power structure, and then just leave. It seems to me the urge to devour flesh, rich or poor should have taken far more priority for at least the majority of the zombies no matter what their "leader" happened to be moaning. Some of those former residents of Fiddler's Green were the power-mongers families, left to die at the fences by the 'underpriviledged', who conveniently squirrel themselves away without bothering to help them. Staying faithful to series history and remaining logical are forsaken for the sake of social commentary, making for a very unfulfilling and illogical ending.
I thought the Dawn remake was a great modern reworking of the original, the best of the modern crop of zombie movies, and when it comes to some high tech gore and especially a fortified bus-type vehicle it had Land beat by over a year. Its also superior to Land because it conveys greater desperation and more of a stacked odds scenario with its unprecedented hordes which Land lacked. High production values and flash worked for the remake whereas it seems out of place for a Romero zombie movie, especially as a follow-up to Day which was very bleak and claustrophobic. The original Dawn looked a lot more expensive than it really was, and the high octane feel along with its late 70s origin worked for it. Perhaps Land had too much money in this heavily big studio backed modern era than was good for it. Dawn's opening worldwide chaos montage is one of its greatest strengths and helps set the tone for the rest of the movie, whereas Land's comes off very pale by comparison. The fireworks as a distraction mechanism and the old-time Universal logo sequence are nice little touches, but Land needed a lot more creative and thoughtful effort, as well as staying more consistent with its predecessors to really make it something special, which is what it should have been.
I really question that this is the best Romero could do after all this time. Maybe it all would have been better and more satisfying if it'd happened a lot sooner, possibly predating the whole contemporary resurgence of the sub-genre. I believe timing and creative freedom were likely factors of Land's shortcomings. There's certain magic and greatness that just can't be recaptured sometimes. Or maybe this is the best he could do, with nowhere to go but down after his previous efforts. For non-Romero enthusiasts I suppose its sufficiently entertaining, which it is, I voted it as a 6, but expectations of old-time fans, at least myself, were for greatness, and rightfully so considering its roots, but it just can't touch the originals.
I have wanted to see this film for a long time based on its very cool original VHS cover art and I finally rented the recently released DVD to see it. I had assumed long ago it was a typical slasher set on new year's eve, but before I had rented it I had read little blurbs about something to do with time travel or something supernatural, and was a bit turned off by this. Well, it turned out that the film isn't a slasher at all and really it can not be neatly categorized as belonging to any one horror subgenre. I really liked this movie and am disappointed to see such unfavorable comments about it. Yes, its cheap, and cheesy and lame in some parts, and the acting and realism and logic is far from stellar, and yes it borrows somewhat from famous movies such as the Evil Dead movies and the A Nightmare On Elm Street series, but all that withstanding the film is very entertaining and has a great deal of originality to it. Many of its effects are quite impressive and creative and although things are a bit slow to start early on, once things start happening, the pace and frequency with which weird stuff happens is relentless! I think many non-horror fans would find this amusing because to them it would probably be a complete joke, and I highly recommend this movie to all horror fans who can look past low budgets, poor acting, and faulty logic, and still enjoy a very well written and photographed, extremely unique movie.
A well done, original, slasher movie *Minor Spoilers*
Terror Train is definitely an above average slasher movie. This is mostly due to its unique and original qualities, and having the Scream Queen herself Jamie Lee in it certainly doesn't hurt. Most of the movie takes place on a train, and that right there immediately separates and distinguishes it from most slashers, and then there is the added creative component of having the killer switch costumes so as not to be detected so easily, which I thought was a very nice touch. It has good gore and some suspense, and a decent body count. Its definitely worth at the very least, a rental, by any horror, and, especially, slasher fan. I plan to buy it if and when its released on DVD.
A GREATER THAN GREAT REMAKE! Surpasses the original! *NO SPOILERS*
Words like great, fantastic, spectacular, fabulous, and wonderful are perfect adjectives to describe the Dawn Of The Dead remake. I saw it last night, and loved it so much I plan on seeing it again today. I am a huge fan of the original, I even wore my Dawn Of The Dead shirt made to honor the original to see the remake last night, but I believe that the remake has got it beat by its entertainment and production values. The original will always be a classic, and was the model for pretty much all zombie movies after it to follow, and, until I saw its remake last night, I felt it was the greatest zombie movie ever. I now feel that its remake is the best ever. It has better special effects, better acting, and a manic energy and thoroughly pervasive creepiness that pervades and oozes from the entire movie! This is a MUST SEE FILM for any self-respecting fan of the original Dawn, ANY zombie movie, ANY horror fan, and ALL non-horror fans who have any interest at all in being IMMENSELY ENTERTAINED and CAPTIVATED by a movie. I gave it 10 outta 10, and if I could have given it more, I would have! Its even better than a 10! If you haven't seen it yet, STOP READING THIS REVIEW RIGHT NOW, and GO SEE IT!
Not only is this movie the worst of the entire Silent Night, Deadly Night series, it is also one of the worst slashers ever made. The main reason for this movie being so awful is that it has absolutely horrendous pacing. It moves beyond slow, and as a result is dull during times when it should be exciting, like when the killer is getting closer and closer to a victim, but in this movie the killer is so messed up and brain damaged he walks slower than any grandma walking the planet when he's actually a skinny twentysomething year old dude. It is due to the killer's slugglishness that taints the whole movie because since he is so slow pretty much every scene he is in bores you out of your mind. If your making your way through the SNDN series in order, SKIP THIS ONE, and move on to SNDN 4 which may have nothing to do with Christmas but it is actually the second best of the series in my opinion because it is very entertaining and creative, plus it has giant cockroaches, wormslugs, and Clint Howard, so, yeah, exactly, you just can't go wrong with that combination.
This movie is at the exact opposite end of the spectrum of campy cheesy sleazy horror motel-themed fun and greatness that Motel Hell is on. Motel Hell is a great movie whereas Mountaintop Motel Massacre is one of the slowest, worst, most boring movies ever made. There is nothing entertaining about watching an old lady scamper about extremely slowly putting bugs in people's motel rooms to kill them, that's just ridiculous and stupid. The makers of this movie should have just given her an axe and had her go around chopping up all her guests, and this movie would have been so much better. Instead they went the BAD WEIRD STUPID route and made one of the dumbest slowest and boringest horror movies ever. If your looking for a good, fun, entertaining motel-themed horror movie check out Motel Hell.
The best thing about this movie is its cover art...
The only reason I rented this movie was because it has one of the coolest covers I've ever seen of any movie and the title is cool. But, the cover art of Mausoleum is the best thing about the whole movie. The plot is decent, something about a woman being able to turn into a demon after she is possessed early on in her life inside a mausoleum which housed an evil spirit of some sort she accidentally unleashed, and if the movie had a better script it might have actually been able to be a decent movie since its effects and photography weren't that bad. But its script sucks, and the movie is pervasively boring throughout. And the climax is awful as well, I remember how anxious I was wanting the movie to JUST END, but it kept going on, and on, and on, avoid this movie unless you love shlocky bad boring movies.
I rented this movie based on its title and interesting cover art and it is definitely one of the worst movies I have ever seen. There's barely a story, basically the movie uses the typical killer stalking teenage victims slasher formula, except the teens are being killed on an island, and the killer, some kind of bigfoot-type creature that is part human, is hardly ever seen, and more than half the movie was shot so dark its hard to tell most of the time what the hell's going on. Both horror fans and non-horror fans alike should avoid this crappy movie. Some hardcore fans of schlock might find some enjoyable qualities about it though, if they can find it anywhere, as it isn't on DVD as far as I know and the VHS copies of it are pretty rare.
Food Of The Gods is one of the worst movies I have ever seen, and I have seen A LOT of BAD, REALLY AWFUL movies. The worst thing about FOTG is that its so goddamn boring. Once animals get really big and turn into really fake looking puppets, its STILL REALLY, REALLY BORING! I struggled to stay awake for this movie, and the ending is excruciatingly SLOW, it seems to go even slower than the whole rest of the movie if that's even a possibility. Don't see this movie unless you'd think you'd really enjoy seeing a really giant fake looking chicken attack old women in a scene that looks incredibly amateurish and moves at a snail's pace, and is sandwiched in between 2 other similarly wretched, awfully slow, dull, and boring scenes featuring similarly very fake looking giant animals attacking people who can't act to save their lives.
I am very surprised to see such a high rating for this film, and of the few reviews that there are to be positive. I saw the movie and was pretty dissapointed. I didn't find it very enjoyable at all. It was slow, and lacks the entertainment value. Even the murder scenes are lackluster, with real close-up shots of generic stabbings that don't look good at all. And the supposed great twist ending is really not much, I did see it coming, and then the ending just seemed cliche. This movie may not get much mention, but by the little that it does get, it is overrated. I would not recommend this movie.