Midsommar review “Ari Aster does it again”

Midsommar movie posterWatch the walls. Director Ari Aster’s advice to cinema-goers heading out to see his second directorial feature may seem strange, but it makes sense once you see it. Aster’s Hereditary (2018) follow-up is sunny, funny and so pretty you barely notice the horror.

Our protagonist Dani is reaching the end of a four-year relationship with Christian (Jack Reynor), an uninterested, inattentive boyfriend who wanted to end it months ago but stayed with Dani when tragedy befalls her and her family. Dani joins Christian and his pals Josh (William Jackson Harper), Mark (Will Poulter) and Swedish native Pelle (Vilhelm Blomgren) for a nine day once-in-a-lifetime festival celebrating midsommar in Pelle’s hometown of Halsingland. Continue reading

Us review “Smart and stylish”

Us movie posterPeele’s sudden and swift success with Get Out (2017) left many wondering if the sketch comedian turned director really could be the horror pantheon’s saviour. After a lean half century brimming with blood, gore and gratuitous torture porn, the genre emerged into something of a renaissance. Following the release of Get Out came a swath of imaginative and intelligent thrillers like Raw (2016), The Babadook (2014) and It Follows (2014) and the horror genre began to establish itself as the go-to vehicle for social commentary.

By far the most commercially successful iteration was Get Out, which grossed just over $250 million worldwide. But after such overwhelming success, could Peele really do it again with Us? Well, the answer is yes. Just as Get Out was a chilling survival horror that had oh-so-relevant things to say about the African-American experience, Us is a chilling survival horror that equally has a significant amount to say about duality, privilege and the swelling vein of apathy running through the heart of America. Continue reading

One Cut of the Dead review “Not just another zombie movie”

One Cut of the Dead movie posterThe horror genre is, arguably, one of the most predictable movie genres around. Stuffed to the brim with tropes, stereotypes and predictability, it can feel like you’re watching the same film over and over again. However, Japanese filmmaker Shin’ichirô Ueda had a different idea for his zombie flick, One Cut of the Dead. However, does it break new ground, or is it a resurrection of a movie that has already been made?

One Cut of the Dead is a story in three acts. It begins with a group of people who are filming a low-budget zombie horror movie in a disused water filtration plant, but then are attacked by real zombies. Carnage ensues for about half an hour, before the movie takes a completely surprising turn. Without giving too much away, it’ll have you crying, but not in a scared way. Continue reading

Summer of 84 review “Blood, gore and nostalgia”

Summer of 84 movie posterThe 1980’s has become a ‘flavour of the month’ for many a medium in the 21st century. Maybe it’s because the filmmakers of today were the children of the 1980s, or maybe it’s just because the 1980’s is one of the most idealised periods of time. Children riding on bikes, nothing to be scared of. However, Summer of 84 would disagree that there’s nothing for kids to be scared of, even in the 80s.

Summer of 84 follows a group of kids as they try to prove that their next door neighbour, Mr Mackey, is a notorious serial killer. As with all good homages to the 80s, it’s got good music, bad fashion and a lot of walkie talkies. Continue reading

Escape Room review “Jigsaw’s hand-me-downs”

Escape Room posterIn the year 2004, the film Saw was released, and people just went crazy over it, and… I kinda get it. I do really like the ending and it does have some good scares, but besides that it’s a pretty dull movie that created the torture gimmick that many horror movies now practice.

Escape Room is the latest film to  jump on the bandwagon and I was not excited for it at all. In the last two years, the first ventures into horror have been Insidious: The Last Key and The Bye Bye Man, the latter being one of my least favorite films ever made. Does Escape Room break the curse? Let’s talk about that, and the Saw movies, I’ll be talking about those a lot too here. Continue reading