The Wicker Man (1973)

The Wicker Man 1973 Cover Art

Director: Robin Hardy

Writer: Anthony Shaffer

Stars: Edward Woodward, Christopher Lee, Diane Cilento

The Wicker Man (1973)

 

So this is one of those movies that I’ve been told over and over “See the original, it’s so much better than the remake” – and I’d been meaning to get around to it. Now, it does star the ever fabulous Christopher Lee, and that is a plus to any movie, so it did help encourage me to finally sit down and watch it.

I have seen the remake, but it’s been a while so it’s difficult to make a direct comparison. I will say at first when you’re watching the movie it’s difficult to determine if you’re watching a horror movie, or a musical. But the dedication to the religion of Summer Isle is rather astounding, and interesting to say the least. The beginning does drag a bit – and I have a sneaking suspicion that a portion of the reason that some people tell me that this original is so much better than the remake is the amount of nudity involved in it (meaning: a lot).

But all in all, it is a good movie once the action and intrigue get going, and one I would definite re-watch on occasion. So while age and a somewhat slower script bog it down, it earns a respectable three out of five bloody kitties.

three bloody kitten rating

The Hills Have Eyes (1977)

The Hills Have Eyes 1977 Cover Art

Director/Writer: Wes Craven

Stars: Suze Lanier-Bramlett, Robert Houston, John Steadman

The Hills Have Eyes (1977)

So this is one of those long talked about classics I hadn’t gotten around to seeing yet. So often you hear about how the original is so much better than the remakes, and I’ve yet to see the remake, so I am going in to the experience with an open mind, and nothing to compare it to.

Watching it with only the comparison of modern day effects, acting, and writing, I’m not impressed. The acting has that stilted feel of a poorly written 70’s soft core porn. The effects for the most part consisted of the “keep it just off camera” method – which in general there’s nothing wrong with, if it’s done effectively, which it’s just not in this case. And finally, the script really could have just used some help to improve the story line and speed up some of the parts where it managed to drag due to what seemed to be inactivity in the story line – making you wait for something to happen.

Generally with an older classic such as this, I’m willing to grant a little more latitude, since I can typically say if I’d seen it earlier, I’d think it was a good movie, but in this case, I don’t believe that is the case. This movie is just not really scary enough (plus – they do one of my big no nos at the beginning!), so this gets a two bloody kitties out of five.

two bloody kitties

Deep Dark

the unborn cover art

Director/Writer: Michael Medaglia

Stars: Sean McGrath, Anne Sorce, Denise Poirier

Deep Dark (2015)

A starving artist, no direction, what seems like less than no talent, living with his mother, looking for his way to finally express himself and find his art.

Now to me, this movie is deliciously dark and funny at the same time. It’s twisted in all the right ways. And it’s one that has to be watched to really be fully understood.  It’s definitely not something that is fully expected when you’re watching.

To me, this movie is something totally memorable. Once you watch it, you’re definitely never going to forget it’s concept. For me, it’s definitely a movie I love to watch. Maybe it’s not one I remember off the top of my head over and over, but once the memory is triggered, it’s once I come back to. While I would love to call it a five bloody kitties movie, the fact that I do have problems remembering the title, unfortunately relegates it to a mere four bloody kitties out of five.

four bloody kitties

The Bay

The Bay Cover Art

Director: Barry Levinson

Writers: Michael Wallach, Barry Levinson

Stars: Will Rogers, Kristen Connolly, Kether Donohue

The Bay (2012)

This movie would easily qualify as “found footage” except that the footage is less found and more recovered from government sources (supposedly).  It’s an interesting mixture of disease/government failure and cover up as well as horror.

Now how good is it? That’s rather questionable. Acting, camera quality, and so on are pretty weak, general story line is also not among the strongest I’ve seen. So personally I can’t call it anything particularly wonderful.

So, in short… this is a two bloody kitties out of five. Something I can easily get through, but not really worth a re-watch unless it’s something you’re personally in to.

two bloody kitties

George A. Romero – Beyond Zombies

George A. Romero has long been long standing figure in the Horror movie world. Anyone who has an somewhat serious interest in movies knows him as the man who created the Zombie movie – his classic Night of the Living Dead will forever live in the minds of Americans as one of the most frightening movies they’d ever seen.

However, what most people don’t realize is that George was involved in horror even beyond zombies. Yes, he kept his hand in it producing his hits Dawn of the Dead, Day of the Dead, and more recently adding to it with Land of the Dead, Diary of the Dead,  and Survival of the Dead – but he was also a key figure in the production of the series Tales from the Dark Side – a late night TV show that aired in the 1980’s.

On top of producing the Tales From the Dark Side series, he wrote a number of episodes, and eventually wrote a segment for the movie that was released in 1990, again with no zombies. Other movies that many people will mention, but perhaps not immediately recognize as being George A. Romero are Monkey Shines and Creepshow.

In short, the loss experienced by the Horror movie genre on July 16 2017, is rather astounding. While it’s one that would have been experienced eventually, it’s still not one that is deeply felt. George is suffering his death with a number of very bad Zombie jokes, but it’s important to remember his other accomplishments as well. While another star will eventually rise in the Horror genre, it’s hard not to feel that perhaps our heart has been ripped out and eaten by the passing of this one.

I give George A. Romero an honorary Five Horror Kitties – for a long life of creative contribution to horror, and in many ways providing a platform for others to show case their own work.

five bloody kitties

Sleepaway Camp

Sleepaway Camp Cover Art

Director/Writer: Robert Hiltzik

Stars: Felissa Rose, Jonathan Tiersten, Karen Fields

Sleepaway Camp (1983)

Classic 1980’s horror film right down to the beginning credits. Families and kids out on the lake for some gorgeous summer fun and then… some dies a horrible death!

Now, if you’re looking for a classic ’80’s horror, I have to say, this one nails it on the head. From acting to death scenes, this movie has it all. I sort of wonder how it was I never saw it before. There really are some pretty creative murders.

So, in short, this is a great movie if you’re in to 80’s horror. I give it a three bloody kitties out of five myself. I’d rate it higher, but for me 80’s horror is still a little too campy to get too high a rating, but it’s always fun to re-watch.

three bloody kitten rating

Boogeyman

Boogeyman Cover Art

Director: Stephen Kay

Writer: Eric Kripke

Stars: Barry Watson, Emily Deschanel, Lucy Lawless

Boogeyman (2005)

So this is one of those movies I was watching a second time specifically just to write a review. It’s not really one of my favorites. Though it does have some of my favorite actors in it.

So the over all concept of this movie is given away in the title – the Boogeyman. It’s a well used concept obviously, the Boogeyman concept being used in terms of everyone, including big names like Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers, and Jason – this is really a movie using it the name to give the Boogieman a lore all his own.

How successful were they? I’m not sure I’d say they managed all that well, personally, as on my second viewing of this movie I barely paid attention enough to really give a solid review. In short, it’s not enough to really hold my attention for a re-watch, giving it a two bloody kitties out of five.

two bloody kitties

The Collector

The Collector Cover Art

Director: Marcus Dunstan

Writer: Patrick Melton, Marcus Dunstan

Stars: Josh Stewart, Andrea Roth, Juan Fernández

The Collector (2009)

So you’ve seen Hostel and Saw, and you’re wondering if there really is anything worth seeing in terms of gore any more. Well I’m here to tell you there is. This movie has what the others lacked – good story line, and characters you really start to care about.

Is there gore? Yes. Are there traps? Oh my yes. How are these traps better? The suspense… the sweet suspense. The surprise. Oh yes. the wonderful surprise. This movie is like a top grade stripper who knows what she’s doing, who knows how to tease you until you are just so ready for her to give you what you want… and the waits just that extra second more…

If you’re wondering what I think of this movie. It’s pretty easy. This is one of those rare movies that are, without a doubt, my favorite… the best among horror. Five bloody kitties out of five.

five bloody kitties

31

31 Cover Art

Director/Writer: Rob Zombie

Stars: Malcolm McDowell, Richard Brake, Jeff Daniel Phillips

31 (2016)

Well, it’s a Rob Zombie movie, so what can I say? The best way I can describe it is Running Man meets Carnival…. and that’s without giving away a whole lot. There’s a lot tho enjoy from there I think. The cast of characters is rather unique, and of course, Sheri Moon Zombie figures prominently in the casting.

I wouldn’t call it a great movie, I wouldn’t call it terrible either. I, personally don’t think it’s one of the greatest movies I’ve watched. It has some certain moments that are rather nicely rendered, but overall it’s rather meh in terms of horror. Middle of the line without a doubt. So this gets a firm three bloody kitties. I might re-watch it somewhere down the line, and I don’t regret watching it, but it was definitely nothing spectacular.

three bloody kitten rating

Cannibal Ferox

Cannibal Ferox

Director/Writer: Umberto Lenzi

Stars: Giovanni Lombardo Radice, Lorraine De Selle, Danilo Mattei

Cannibal Ferox (1981)

Cannibal Ferox – the horror movie so gory that it was supposedly banned in 31 countries, some that have only recently lifted that ban. At the time of it’s release it was advertised as the goriest movie to be released, and supposedly the events depicted were so real that it was investigated as a potentially real murder.

Do I have your curiosity up? Are you sitting there thinking “This must be an amazingly gory movie that I must run and see?” – Well let me stop you right there friend, because you know that while I will never spoil a plot, I’m not about to let you bore yourself to tears with a move that has bad acting and poor pacing. And believe me. This one is full of both.

It has gore, don’t get me wrong. One place I even feel bad for any men that decide to watch it, since there’s a bit I don’t think you’d see any modern day Saw or Hostel movies, but it’s not enough to make up for the fact that the over all story is badly acted and a down right snooze. In general, I give this two bloody kitties out of five. Watch it if you want to – but don’t say I didn’t warn you first.

two bloody kitties