jmbovan-47-160173

IMDb member since July 2014
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Reviews

Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn
(2020)

Oddly off and horribly paced
So the funnest elements of Harley Quinn are oddly angled into the plot. Strange at how off the elements of this film come together, the direction jumping back and forth on the time line, etc. I was surprised at how unsettling the treatment of women was given my assumption of breaking out of the gender constraints often inherent in comic book films. I felt it lack decent character development with many being one note, and left simply to be "crazy." Underwhelming and that was upsetting to me after the presentation of Harley Quinn was more fully realized in Suicide Squad.

Shrunken Heads
(1994)

Bizarre mixture of film tones fails miserably
This has the feelnof a kids or early teen Goosebumps story. But it has decidedly adult elements that darken the tone. These two contrasting tones to mesh or meld; they stand in stark contrast to each other the entire time. Bizarre complete picture that doesn't hold well for a film.

Die, Monster, Die!
(1965)

Campy fun from this era of horror
Chilling thriller storyline builds to campy conclusion. Fun trope filled film that let's you know exactly when to be scared (and laugh). Good fun Saturday afternoon flick.

Black Site
(2018)

Low budget film with thought out mythos.
So, not great film as the low budget definitely keep production values to a minimum. The mythos background of the film definitely was worth the making. Unfortunately, all that backdrop doesn't make for a great film. Too bad as it has a mildly interesting subtext.

Blood Conscious
(2021)

Uncertain film plotting
So, annoying people are heading to a cabin for the weekend with the parents (brother and sister plus her fiancee). When they arrive, a stranger claims that people are being possessed by demons. And that's about as far as the movie progresses. Annoying characters and an unresolved plot. Ho hum.

#FollowFriday
(2016)

Poor production of Nancy Drew for the social media age
So, the quality of the film is low as well as the acting. Plot is basic and unresolved. This made me think of the old Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys from the 1970's just set for the millennial age. Tired and weak.

Venom: Let There Be Carnage
(2021)

Lifeless sequel
So there is just enough fun with Eddie and Venom to keep the film at least watchable. Otherwise, this is a lifeless sequel that doesn't build upon the original. The new characters are cliques and have little characterization or meaningful plot points. And the returning characters are better established from the first film, but they are given little to do but retread what was fun the first time and is now stale. Plotting is miniscule and sorely missing. Sad little film.

The Cellar
(2022)

Staid example of this ilk of film.
We've seen this film before in different plotting. Some are able to enliven the plotting, but this film sticks to the basics and doesn't try to make a spot of difference. Thus leaves the film short on character development and blunt with plotting and scene changes. The acting isn't bad, but no one is given much to do. It looks fairly well done. But there are few scares to be found. Watchable, but nothing much to see.

The Seance
(2021)

Quiet but smart Paranormal Activity type film
This is a thinking person's haunted film. Quirky with slight humor elements, the majority of the film is a dialogue between two characters. So while many may feel it is slow and "talky," I felt the development of the characters and supernatural elements were excellent and captivating. Charming, which is an unusual adjective for this type of film.

Copshop
(2021)

Skilled set of mostly redundant drab
Most of the elements are good here: acting, directing, visuals. Plotting misses the mark wirhheavily cliched elements and standard trope characters. That being said, I was still engaged with the film and watched to the end. Enjoyable, just nothing new.

The Passing
(2011)

Low budget and it feels it.
So, after the passing of the matriarch if a family, there is an inheritance that us only passed down the females in the family. And it's supernatural. That being said, thus filmbis heavily cliched with not much acting present (although some do better than others). By the book plotting is only hampered by the bad special effects. Boring. Avoid it.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife
(2021)

Fun sequal to thr first film
I enjoyed this film as it developed well from the first film, and it updated the franchise with the new characters and time period. This maintain the fun spirit of the first two films and stayed consistent with the balance in tone. Acting is excellent from the child actors as they carry the load here. Fresh and fun while still being familiar.

Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City
(2021)

Decent dark and creepy film.
This is a new take on the Resident Evil franchise, and I'm assuming closer to the tone of the games. There is a sense of dread that is stronger with a better formed plotting and characters, or at least more traditional to a movie. That being said, the pacing is somewhat steady and slow with only moments of more intensity. Overall the film does justice to the series and does take a new perspective.

Cherry Falls
(2000)

Lackluster slasher
Strange and boring aren't good adjectives for a slasher film. And yet this doesn't do Cherry Falls enough justice for how utterly slight a film this is. Plotting is less rational than most slasher. And the acting is bizarre to say the least: camp terror? Even that has too much detail for the off putting quality. Ignore any lists that say this is a hidden gem. This rightfully needs to remain lost.

Prisoners of the Ghostland
(2021)

Wacky Mad Max on hallucinogens
Trippy and makes no sense film making give this Nicolas Cage film a deep swift kick in the butt. Not as over the top as some of his films, but it has a fun quality to it. Just watch and enjoy, don't try to make sense of it.

Extra Ordinary
(2019)

Fun silly small but great film
Charming and quaint film of the supernatural and social activity of a quiet woman in Ireland. Just go with the silliness and enjoy the fun characters as they fumble about to get to the laughable end.

The Forever Purge
(2021)

Frightening for the reality with our times
The Purge returns, but the fanatical section of society decide to change the formula. Standard Purge elements exist, but character development has more focus (albeit small overall). The real frightening aspect of this film is the fact that the USA seems two small steps away from this type of situation occurring. Plotting has a weak aspect when attempting to address some cultural prejudices and biases with the White and Mexican characters, but given the overall heavy handed message of the Purge films, it is within the realm of the films.

The Vigil
(2019)

Contemplative examination of horror
Contemplative examination of horror within the confines and constraints of the Hasidic community. As the protagonist sits with the dead to protect the soul from evil. This film studies the quiet times when we question what is real or what is in our minds. Small and confined setting only focuses us more on the question of the the nature of evil.

A House on the Bayou
(2021)

Cajun Morality tale
So, a decent twisting plot helps a somewhat standard movie. An extra star or two for the overall impact and philosophical aspects developed in the film as well as the restraint used by the filmmakers to keep graphic elements to a minimal. It still packs tension in the film but without the use of excessive force. Some elements are a bit contrived, ans that does lessen the impact of the film. But still a decent watch.

Antlers
(2021)

Failed to create the necessary tension
This is a decent plot and script (based upon an excellent short story), but the film misses many opportunities by revealing the subject of the film too soon. The early exposure of what is happening removes any chance to develop the tension, mystery, and suspense. This turns the film into a slow plod toward the finish. Acting is excellent all the way around. An unfortunate subplot only distracts any character development in trying to connect people, further weakening the plot.

My Heart Can't Beat Unless You Tell It To
(2020)

Interesting only for acting and production quality
This is a well made small indie film, but overall plotting is minimal with only one thing possible to happen, and there is slow movement to get there at the end of the film. The production expertly captures this very small confined family well. And the three main actors do well with embodying the opposing motivations inherent in the situation of their family. The failure of this film how small overall focus of the film is. The stage is set for progression on the one point, and ultimately this is very small point foreshadowed by the nature of the film itself. I was disappointed with the outcome being given the potential it has.

The Little Things
(2021)

Ponderous exploration of obsessed male egos
So, men who try to find killers seems to be as twisted mentally as the sociopaths they hunt. Or, this film was made for three Oscar winners to act cool against each other. Ponderous plotting and pacing leaves this slow walker and slow talker characters "thinking" about what they are doing and what the killer is doing. And Machiavellian logic is on full display. Boring and uninteresting.

Harpoon
(2019)

Tortured, Tortured, and Tortured
This film has the ability to create tension, but with miserable people floundering against each other, the film loses steam as the viewer wants to be done with all of them. The narration of the film only created confusion for me as it brings a comic note to a film that contradicts the elements that build the tension. Plotting as well is heavy handed, forecasting what is going to happen, turning the tension to disgust as it unfolds exactly as expected. Torturous film that I had to work to get through, fighting my disgust and boredom.

The Deep House
(2021)

Watered down plot and set.
The larger problem I have is how annoying the main male character is. But, I guess this is needed as a plot contrivance or else the movie wouldn't happen. The majority of the plot is housed in a submerged house, and this didn't help with the movie. They follow a minor Lovecraftian plotting, but the set is waterlogged and confided, but only limits vision. Not scary or inventive.

The Deep Ones
(2020)

Lame presentation
So, this has decent production values, but the film falls into comical presentation with the actors. It follows well with the Lovecraft plot, but the fanaticism of the group turns the acting into pantomime. And unfortunately the film doesn't want to answer this or call into question the quality of acting. Harumph.

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