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Messages - pictsy

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Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 25 October, 2021, 01:48:34 PM »
Hellraiser III : Dream Warriors

oops, wrong franchise.

Hellraiser III : Hell on Earth

Yeah, there is some weird dream nonsense in this film that is a major part of the resolution but isn't really explored in much depth.

When I started watching this one it almost got me.  I thought for a moment it might be better than I remembered.  For a brief moment.  I still think it's crap.  However, I do think it's a lot better than a fair chunk of the Friday the 13th franchise.  Doug Bradley is fun in this film getting a lot more screen time.  The pillar that showed up at the end of II is better designed if not quite as a creepy.  It's pacing is pretty good and the narrative does flow well.  It's actually not unwatchable.  That's it for praise. 

The "psuedo-Cenobites" are just awful.  CDs, cameras, barb wire (I think this guy was a bar tender... the joke is very bad), piston (because sex, apparently) and.... a cigarette???  Motivations are again muddled.  What was established in the first two films seems largely abandoned for something more unclear.  It's not threatening, intimidating, scary, tense, creepy or disgusting.  It's just very, very dumb.  And dumbed down.  This has no edge.  And still, it's actually not unwatchable.

I'm hoping Bloodlines is the fun-dumb I vaguely remember it being.  I definitely remember thinking the space stuff was interesting.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 24 October, 2021, 08:57:05 PM »
Wow, there seems to be some division on the Dune movie.  I might bother to watch it now.  I was considering not because when I last read the book I realised it's really over rated and has a multitude of issues (beyond the problematic elements).  I'm wondering if the film retains some of these issues. 

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 24 October, 2021, 07:16:17 PM »
I just read a quick review of Threads, and I might watch it some other time! As it came out in 1984, it reminds me that I took my dad to see Blade Runner ('82), and he complained that it was too depressing. He got his revenge a few years later by taking me to see When the Wind Blows ('86). Blade Runner's rather jolly in comparison.

When the Wind Blows is a good film and harrowing in it's mundane depiction of nuclear horror.  Threads is a lot more brutal film in it's bleakness.

I'd like to revisit myself one day soon to see how hard it punches for me now.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 24 October, 2021, 05:28:30 PM »
Scum - a tough watch that meanders a bit as it becomes less the story of Carlin and more the story of the borstal system itself. I'd call it essential cinema, but not for the faint of heart.

Haven't seen this in years.  Used to enjoy it alongside I.D.  I'd agree about it getting very grim and unpleasant.  I think it would still hold relevance today given it's commentary.  Maybe not the specifics of the Borstals but certainly establishment institutions.

After some British film-making that's not for the faint of heart?  Then I recommend Threads.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 24 October, 2021, 03:10:46 PM »
Hellbound: Hellraiser II

Yeah, pretty much what I remember.  Like it about the same as I did as a kid.  As a follow up to the original it works well.  I'd say it's certainly worth watching the two movies as companion pieces.

Much like with the first there is some really excellent stuff and some ropey stuff.  For the most part I'd just be treading the same ground as before.

Things specifically about this film I like are the expansion of lore.  Going into the Cenobite dimension is certainly something and I think it looks really good.  I like the weird black lighthouse thing going on that is apparently Leviathan.  It's nice to see the OG Cenobites back, even if there are noticeable differences with the Chatterer make-up and the new actress for "Deepthroat".  It still works.  It is great that, in both films, these characters leave such an impression despite the extremely short screentime they get.  Less is more.

The Doctor Cenobite doesn't work as well.  It's okay and does it's job, but it set an unfortunate precedent that lead to the fucking dumb design in HRIII.  At least it wasn't quite as on the nose in this film.  Motivations are a little muddy in presentation and follow-throughs are weak for it.

Overall, another good time had.  I know what is next isn't going to be good at all.  But I know how dumb it is and maybe I'll have some fun at least sniggering at it.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 23 October, 2021, 06:27:00 PM »
Dune. Holy sneck. That's how you make a movie.

I'm going to take it you're talking about the new one. 

Because if you are not then I congratulate you on such a bold statement ;)

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 23 October, 2021, 03:39:41 PM »

I'm doing it!  I'm invested and I'm doing all the Doug Bradley Hellraisers.  Wish me luck as a retread some old ground and finally watch 6, 7 and 8.  The last time I watched all the Hellraiser films there were only 5, but I did rewatch the first more recently.  And I didn't enjoy it that time around.  Much like an experience I had with The Crow I was disappointed once I saw the tattered edges and fraying stitches.  Having a better understanding of the films failures it was nice to revisit this film once again.  I adored it as a kid and was really drawn in with Franks resurrection and the Cenobites.  I actually felt a little nostalgia for that experience.  The Cenobites are imposing, threatening and intimidating but don't do a great deal themselves.  The real horror is with Frank and Julia.  The whole thing is really melodramatic and Andrew Robinson is fun to watch, as ever.

Some of the effects are a real mixed bag.  Some are charming, some are goofy, some are excellent and some are terrible.  The setting is weird.  I'm not entirely sure this film is explicitly set in England.  Just looked it up and it was originally intended to be in the UK, but New World convinced Barker to set it in the US and he did overdubbing for some of accents.  I was going to mention some of the dubbing was bad, so this is probably the reason why.  OK, well, I'm holding it against the film because it is just confusing.

The house being the main setting is a problem for me too.  The house design is not good for filming and the limited shots and angles become very noticeable through their constant repetition.  I also found it difficult to keep track of the geography of the shots which had a negative effect on the flow of action.  These are the major reasons I had a bad time watching it the last time because it just looks cheap and amateurish.

Overall I had a good time.  It is engaging.  The pacing is good, the story is interesting, the lore and world-building has a lot of intrigue.  It is very aggressive in it's BDSM representation and I don't know whether that's a good or bad thing.  It's certainly something that all the sequels I watched couldn't get right if they even bothered to do so.  I don't know why, it's pretty clear in the film "Demons to some, Angels to others".

Looking forward to watching Hellbound tonight.  It's been about twenty years and I'm curious how much of it I remember.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 22 October, 2021, 12:14:17 PM »
It Follows

Sexually transmitted ghost?  Is this film trying to say something?  If it is, I actually missed it because it does come across as pretty straight forward.  It's a decent film.  It kind of burns slow, has very nicely framed shots and builds a lot of tension with relatively little effort.  There are some almost cliche techniques utilised in this film, but it's not aggressive and distracting.  And yeah, it does follow.  And it's really creepy.

Also, here is a film with an actual ambiguous ending.  I like it here.  I think it works in the context of the film.  Keeps it all unsettling.  It's good, because no catharsis is offered in this film.  Exposition is kept to a minimum.  Although, when I think about it I wonder how they know as much as they do.

So yeah, pretty decent.  One of the better films I've watched so far this month.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 20 October, 2021, 11:08:42 PM »

I went into this with low expectations (pretty standard approach at this point) without knowing anything much about it on the recommendations made to me on this board.

Did I do something to hurt you guys?

Jokes aside, the film is pretty crap.  A lot of choices were made in the production of this film and I question almost all of them.  Amara Zaragoza's acting is terrible.  The conceit is stupid.  Victor Crowley has a terrible design.  The comic relief is not funny.  Parry Shen's character is confusing.  Joel David Moore lacks any level of charisma.  The running around in circles was boring.  The motivation was weak.  The lore is poorly developed.  It is mean spirited.  It's a bad Friday the 13th knock-off.

Okay, okay.  Some positives.  After all, it's not the worst film I've seen (which coincidently is a terrible slasher film).  I liked Joleigh Fiore in this and her sniping with Mercades McNab (of BtVS, Angel and Addams Family Values fame) was decent and the absolute highlight of the film.  I rooted for those two to make it to the end.  You can imagine how I really started loosing interest once they were killed off.  Okay, trying to stay positive.  It's nice to Richard Riehle and Patrika Darbo get work... I've seen them in other things.  Umm.  It's a very 2000's film but it's not the worst example of it.  It's not Hostel.  It only goes on for 80 minutes and five of those are credits.  So there, it's not 100% terrible.

Anyway, I gave it a go and I do appreciate receiving recommendations.  I think it is worth sitting through the occasional stinker if I get to see some gems and I've had more gems recommended to me here than stinkers.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 20 October, 2021, 04:00:23 PM »
Session 9

I really wasn't expecting much from this film.  It is certainly one of the better films I've watched this month.  It is one of the best haunted house (even if it's set in a mental hospital) films I've seen to date.

The setting carries a lot of the heavy lifting being, iirc, an actual abandoned mental hospital that they did very little set work to.  It's disrepair and overall look gives an almost terrifyingly beautiful aesthetic to the film.  It's creepy as fuck, too.

The central ambiguity and mystery plays out nicely throughout and it gets most of it's tension through character interaction and uncertainty.  I think it does a very good job in this regards.  There is a notion that the ending is ambiguous and I get why but very much disagree.  We are all but literally told what is going on.  What is going on, what is being said and the context it is presented makes it very clear.  Sure, minutiae aren't entirely clear but that's largely irrelevant.  It doesn't matter anyway because the film doesn't benefit from being ambiguous, take from it what you want.

Overall a decent film with some good tension and nice horror moments that has some appreciable visuals.  If you like the psychological horror or haunted house thing, I'd recommend this one.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 19 October, 2021, 02:33:52 PM »
Train to Busan

Well this one ended up punching me in the feels.

Thoroughly enjoyable movie, highly entertaining.  It does so much with the premise of Zombies on a train and the horrors go beyond the Zombies themselves.  What I like is how it explores the idea of competition versus cooperation.  What it is, at a fundamental level, to be a good person.  And it's done with a heartbreaking story about a girl and her father.  There is so much going on and it's done with such efficiency.

The film, for the most part, looks great.  There are some dodgy CGI moments, but they are few and far between and we mostly are treated to a visual feast.  The pacing is spot on and I found myself captivated throughout.

Even though the Friday movies ended up being a slog, I'm really glad I'm doing this now because I've seen three outstanding films this month.  I'm not sure what I'm watching tonight, but I think I'm done with the Zombies for now... perhaps.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 18 October, 2021, 10:44:10 AM »
Return of the Living Dead

Brains!  Brains!

This was pretty enjoyable.  I found it amusing, chuckling to myself a couple of times and smiling more than once.  It has a good soundtrack that sets the mood perfectly and even cues important plot points rather than use dialogue.  Which is great because it really pays off at the end (even if it does double down with a bit of dialogue).  But it's not explicit.  The characters say pretty much what they know.

The effects are great.  The shambling horror from the pod is just a stunning piece of effects work and I loved every moment it's grotesque presence was on screen.

I like the zombies.  Not typical in the slightest and their motivation is a horror in itself.  Chemicals are a better explanation than some nonsense from Venus.  They are fast, fully cognisant and need to eat your brain.

Overall, a fun time had with a very fun movie.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 17 October, 2021, 10:16:03 AM »
Night of the Living Dead

This is the first time I've watched this film.  I have seen Dawn, Day and Land.  I was always aware of the cultural significance of this film, the analysis of it in context of the civil rights movement, the codification of the zombie genre.  I knew it was a bit of a cheap affair.  I know many people love it and hold it in high regard.  And you can count me... not among them.  I struggle to say this film is even OK.

It's dated and ropey.  It doesn't really stand out against the imitations that followed. for me.  It's kind of boring.  It is certainly worth watching because it is the originator of a lot of cinema I've consumed, but I am disappointed it wasn't better.  Maybe my opinion is skewed because the film I watched the previous night provided such a good time, but I doubt that.

I am really glad that when I was curious about Zombie film roots many, many years ago that I chose Dawn of Dead.  That film I thoroughly enjoyed.  It is also dated and ropey, but it's not boring.  It's very interesting and compelling, and unlike Night, it is better than many of the imitations that followed.

Anyway, I might struggle in saying that Night is OK, but it's not a terrible film.  It has things going for it, especially Duane Jones' Ben.  It's a good performance.

The end is good as well.  I knew how this film ended before watching it because spoilers weren't always a thing.  Watching it knowing it is coming, it is still good.  Different to what I expected.

For tonight's film the Living Dead will Return.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 16 October, 2021, 11:37:30 AM »
The Girl With All the Gifts

I only recently found out this film existed and I don't know why.  I was expecting it to be decent, but was surprised at how good it actually is.

Firstly, it looks fantastic.  I love everything it does visually.  The overgrown abandoned civilisation thing is really my bag and I don't think I've seen it done this well in film.  And it just gets better as the film progresses.

Sennia Nanua's Melanie is infectiously likeable and she shines in a film that is already full of good performances.  This is great because the story is very much about Melanie and Sennia Nanua's performance played a major part in my enjoyment of the film.

The story is interesting.  It is a pretty basic survival horror movie.  Nevertheless, it takes an interesting approach from getting from A to B and in the case of this type of movie, the journey is what is most important.  I absolutely love the ending as well.  I found it extremely satisfying and hitting the tone just right.

The horror is also good.  I actually felt tension.  The zombies of this film feel threatening in a way that is refreshing.  Let's face, zombie's have been oversaturated in media and their edge has long faded.  There are broader horrors and implications within the film that all lead to the conclusion of the film.  I guess the overall tension of the film is change.

There are glaring similarities with the game, The Last of Us.  Despite what they have in common, this film is very different.  The similarities appear to be coincidental.  The short story that lead to the book that this film is based on and The Last of Us were both published in the same year.  I bring it up because if you have played The Last of Us this film is definitely going to remind you of it.

Is there anything I have forgotten to gush about?  So far, this is the standout film for my horror marathon and I think that says a lot when I also watched The Lighthouse.  I'm not sure if it is clear but I had a great time watching this film.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 15 October, 2021, 11:57:24 AM »
Watch the first one and then leave it at that!

The last time I watched the first one I was very disappointed that it wasn't as good as I remembered it being (loved it as kid, along with the second film).  It's been a long while since I've watched any of the films and I am somewhat curious as to what I would think of 1,2,4 and 5 now.  3 is shit and that'll be unchanging.  So if I'm going to watch one, I'll watch seven more.

That being said, I have seen the first five and I'm not sure whether I want to watch films I've seen before for my horror marathon. 

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