Sunday, September 12, 2010

Horror Movie Review: Beyond Re-Animator

Beyond Re-Animator

Starring: Jeffrey Combs, Jason Barry, Elsa Patakay, Lolo Herrero, and Simon Andreu

Directed by: Brian Yuzna

Written by: Miguel Tejada-Flores, Jose Manuel Gomez, Xavier Berraondo, and Brian Yuzna based on characters created by H. P. Lovecraft

Production Company: Castelao Producciones, Fantastic Factory, Filmax, and Vía Digital

Release Date: April 4, 2003

Awards: Grand Prize of European Fantasy Film in Silver at the 2003 Sweden Fantastic Film Festival

The fantastic Jeffrey Combs returns a third time as Herbert West...Re-Animator. After the events of Bride of Re-Animator, Herbert West is locked away in prison. This hasn't stopped him from his research trying to find the cure for death. He thinks he can extract the soul (he calls it nano-plasm, but each is unique to the person...seems like a pseudo-scientific explanation for the soul to me...) and implant it in the resurrected body, thus preventing the madness so common with his reanimations. But there's only so much he can do as a prisoner.

Until, of course, Howard Phillips joins the prison staff as the new doctor. The warden gives him permission to choose an inmate to be his assistant and he chooses...Herbert West. Also interested in stopping death, Phillips assists West in his research.

As Herbert West's luck runs, no one leaves him in peace to do his experiments. The warden despises him and fellow inmates harass him. Also, West's curiosity gets the better of him as he puts the soul, sorry, nano-plasm, of a mouse into one of his human re-animates.

Then the inevitable prison riot...

On the one hand, the script is hard to take. The nano-soul-plasm thing was a big stretch. But, OK, West's reagent has always been a stretch...but we went further this time. However, we have good horror-comedy and gore. Eyeballs crawling, and, well, the penis is something that must be seen. Male heterosexual horror lovers won't mind seeing the penis.

This is a fun gore film and Jeffrey Combs as Herbert West is one of the best horror film characters of all time...

Related Trailers

Dark House - Jeffrey Combs also stars in Dark House. A troupe of actors hired for a haunted house attraction soon find that they are working in a true house of horror.

Legend of the Bog

Jason Barry, who plays Howard Phillips, also stars in Legend of the Bog. When a 'bog body' a 2000 year old murder victim preserved in a peat bog is disturbed by developers in rural Ireland, an archaeologist, a hunter and their helpers face the task of sending him back where he came from.

Werewolf Hunter - Legend of Romasanta - Elsa Pataky, who played a journalist investigating the prison and the love interest of Howard Phillips, also starred in Werewolf Hunter - Legend of Romasanta. An uproar is caused when some mutilated cadavers are discovered, giving way to the legend of the "Werewolf of Allariz".

Rottweiler - Lolo Herrero also appeared in the Brian Yuzna directed Rottweiler. The movie follows the story of a dog who was beaten severely at a young age and has surgery, in which it's bones are replaced with metallic bones. Later, this half robotic dog comes back for a gruesome revenge.

Beneath Still Waters

Brian Yuzna also directed Beneath Still Waters. Two boys make a pact to do something brave, crazy and dangerous. They will see their town one last time before a man-made lake floods it forever, burying it under the deep lake. Everyone's been evacuated - just the church, the homes, the abandoned shops remain. Only the eerie buildings...still hiding secrets that no one suspects. The two boys walk through the doomed ghost town. But the boys discover that the town isn't quite deserted. And they are trapped as a massive wall of water crashes down on the town. Time passes, and the whispered secrets of the town have been long forgotten. But now, fifty years after vanishing, the sunken town comes alive again. A boy vanishes swimming on a moonlit night while his girlfriend looks on. The very shoreline turns hungry, pulling people into the water. And below-below where it's incredibly cold and dark, the sunken town waits. Because beneath still waters something ancient now stirs. A forgotten legend lives again. Half a century ago they thought they had buried this horror forever. But you can't kill what was never really alive. And the massive stone walls of the Dam must soon burst and what was an incredible myth, will become a deadly reality.

Screamers: The Hunting - Miguel Tejada-Flores also assisted in writing Screamers: The Hunting. A group of humans arrive on Sirius 6-B to investigate an SOS signal sent out from the planet, which has been supposedly deserted since the destruction of the man-made weapons known as "screamers." Once the squad arrives, they find a group of human survivors eking out an existence in an old military outpost, but more important, they discover that the threat of the screamers has become even more insidious, now that they're able to morph into human form.

From Beyond - Brian Yuzna also assisted in writing From Beyond. Scientists create a resonator to stimulate the pineal gland (sixth sense), and open up a door to a parallel (and hostile) universe.

Pickman's Muse - H. P. Lovecraft also inspired the movie Pickman's Muse. An artist, Robert Pickman, becomes obsessed by visions of unworldly horror, revealed to him through an ancient artifact discovered in an abandoned church.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Horror Movie Review: Cornered


Starring: James Duval, Elizabeth Nicole, Peter Story, Ellia English, and Steve Guttenberg

Directed by: Daniel Maze

Written by: Darrin Grimwood and Daniel Maze

Production Company: MAZEfilms

Release Date: November 17, 2009

Awards: Ellia English won for Best Actress at the 2009 New York City Horror Film Festival award and the film won 2nd Place for Best Feature Film at the Rhode Island International Horror Film Festival

I love slasher films. They are the best horror films because the writers and directors have to think up a new gimmick with each film. Jason Voorhees is a zombie in a hockey mask, Freddy Krueger a scarred dream demon, Michael Myers is pure evil in a William Shatner mask...but then things get even crazier...Evan Rendell, aka Dr. Giggles, with his doctor fetish, killers in funhouses, ice cream truck killers, killer clown...the permutations of slashers is fascinating.

So comes the nameless killer of Cornered, a killer of convenience store employees and patrons. His targets in this film are five friends having poker night in the upstairs loft over the convenience store they either work in or shop in. The five victims are interesting characters chock full of vices. There's the alcoholic owner of the shop who berates and belittles his drug addicted nephew. There's the donut nomming loser attracted to the chain smoking prostitute, and my favorite...the ice cream loving phone sex vixen. It's easy to imagine that a night of drinking and playing poker could be a comedy film without the slasher who shows.

The killer overheard them discuss how they would stop him and decided to act out their ideas on them. I find that an interesting twist because you can imagine the victims being found and people saying, "What kind of sick mind could come up with that?" and the answer is the victims themselves.

There wasn't a whole lot actually scary going on, but it was interesting and fun. It's pretty obvious who the killer is, so there's not a whole lot of mystery here, but it's fun nonetheless.

It was cool seeing Steve Guttenberg, even for a little bit. I haven't seen him since the 80s. I know he was working, but not in anything that I wanted to watch. And as mentioned, Ellia English as the ice cream loving phone sexer steals the show. It's a fun watch all in all...but do watch it with an open heart...

Related Trailers

Penance - James Duval also appeared in Penance. A young mother decides to become a stripper to earn some fast cash only to find her worst nightmares are about to begin.

High Spirits

Steve Guttenberg also starred in High Spirits. When Peter Plunkett's Irish castle turned hotel is about to be repossesed, he decides to spice up the attraction a bit for the 'Yanks' by having his staff pretend to haunt the castle. The trouble begins when a busload of American tourists arrive - along with some real ghosts. Among the tourists are married couple Jack and Sharon. Sharon's father holds the mortgage on Castle Plunkett, so she's hoping to debunk the ghosts. Jack, on the other hand, after meeting pretty ghost Mary, is very eager to believe. Can there be love between a human and ghost? Jack and Mary are going to try and find out.