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 Horrorcram XV: Let's Scare Corrierino To Death 
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I just watched the Chilean slasher Sendero. It’s dumb and nonsensical and nothing happens for a reason. Skip this movie nobody’s ever heard of.


Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:40 pm
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I can confirm that Demon Wind is indeed craptacular :up:


Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:00 pm
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Deschain13 wrote:
I just watched the Chilean slasher Sendero. It’s dumb and nonsensical and nothing happens for a reason. Skip this movie nobody’s ever heard of.

Will do.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:14 am
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Rock wrote:

A couple I've done so far. Will post more as I hammer them out (straight from the furnace).

Shock Waves

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Sometimes when I get bored during a movie, I try to figure out who the actors look like. For people like me, Shock Waves is a treat. There’s one guy who looks like Richard Simmons, another who looks like Mark Hamill crossed with Billy Ray Cyrus but with a pornstache, and a third guy who looks like if Jack Lemmon and Ernest Borgnine had a baby who went on to father Rainn Wilson. But as compelling as those resemblances are, it would be unfair to suggest that Shock Waves is boring. It’s a low-key, atmospheric chiller that’s a fair bit more restrained than I would expect from a movie with its premise. A group of vacationers gets stranded on an island that they soon find out, thanks to an expository scene with a neckerchiefed Peter Cushing, is also being visited by Nazi undead supersoldiers. A less disciplined movie might keep throwing these Nazi zombies (Nazombies?) in our face for cheap shocks, and there are some close shaves in this movie, but the best scenes treat them with some distance, so that they can inspire unease without becoming tiresome. It’s a strategy that proves quite effective, especially when combined with the grit of the production. The pervasive grain of the cinematography creates a sort of fog, while the marginal production values give the proceedings a semi-documentary quality (as much as a movie about Nazi zombies can reasonably expect, anyway), and the framing device adds some more implied tension for those who might find the movie too sedate otherwise. It all adds up to a film of quiet, creeping dread.

Castle Freak

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This movie should be a lot more fun than it is. Castle Freak is about an American man (Jeffrey Combs) who inherits a castle in rural Italy and moves there with his wife (Barbara Crampton) and blind daughter. Little do they know that there’s a violent disfigured creature living there as well and that they are in grave danger. It’s directed by Stuart Gordon, who first gained attention with the stomach churning wit of Re-Animator and From Beyond, and got the idea for this one from a poster in the producer’s office. (The producer told him he could do whatever he wanted as long as he kept the castle and the freak.) Castle Freak features its share of gruesome content, and Gordon adds some interest with family melodrama, with the couple grieving their son who was killed in an accident caused by the father’s drunk driving. This sounds like promising material, yet never really comes together. Different parts of the movie play at different pitches, with Combs turning in a performance of overwrought hysterics, Crampton underplaying things (and being given depressingly little to chew on) and the rest of the proceedings playing as Gothic-lite as filtered through a TV movie. (The movie was released direct-to-video.) The movie has the benefit of what looks like a real castle, but depressingly little is presented in a visually interesting manner, as Gordon’s attempts at high style are undone by the cheapness of the presentation. A more forceful directorial presence could shape the movie into something more cohesive and propulsive, as Gordon was able to do with his earlier movies, but here he seems defeated by the production values.


Well I'm not sure if you wanted these in spoilers for a reason, so I will reply vaguely or in spoilers.
I thought the former film was impossibly boring. Like I eventually started getting up and doing other things around the room and just kinda keeping an eye on it. Maybe I'll re-watch it and see if I was missing something.
The latter I thought was great fun and a legitimate hidden gem. I was surprised it wasn't a more well-known film. I thought it was so much better than its budget and continued to show what Gordon could do regardless of lack of funds. I also thought it was kinda scary.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:24 am
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Opinions:

Do you think John McTiernan and/or John Carpenter regret putting the shots of the UFOs in the beginning of Predator and The Thing? Wouldn't that special FX money be better if it was spent on marketing and advertising?

Funny enough, I so rarely caught Predator from the opening that I saw the movie a few times before I even noticed the opening. But wouldn't it have been a more interesting movie if you didn't find out the thing was an alien until the third act?

And The Thing - it's so unncessary. They go out and find the spaceship encased in the ice. You don't need a scene showing it crash landing. WTF?


Any sexual tyrannosaurs out there have a comment?

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:26 am
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And someone tell me I'm not the only Lake Placid fan. (aka Ally McBeal goes to the woods)

Great cast, especially Brendan Gleeson and Oliver Platt, plus bonus foul-mouthed Betty White which pretty much reinvigorated her career.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:28 am
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Wooley wrote:
[/spoiler]

Well I'm not sure if you wanted these in spoilers for a reason, so I will reply vaguely or in spoilers.
I thought the former film was impossibly boring. Like I eventually started getting up and doing other things around the room and just kinda keeping an eye on it. Maybe I'll re-watch it and see if I was missing something.
The latter I thought was great fun and a legitimate hidden gem. I was surprised it wasn't a more well-known film. I thought it was so much better than its budget and continued to show what Gordon could do regardless of lack of funds. I also thought it was kinda scary.

Yeah, Shock Waves I can see others finding too shapeless and slow to amount to anything, but it ended up working for me.

Do you mind elaborating on your thoughts on Castle Freak?

(I'd actually spoilered the post for length, but it ended up being the last post on the page, so it was a meaningless gesture, haha.)

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:37 am
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Death Proof wrote:
Opinions:

Do you think John McTiernan and/or John Carpenter regret putting the shots of the UFOs in the beginning of Predator and The Thing? Wouldn't that special FX money be better if it was spent on marketing and advertising?

Funny enough, I so rarely caught Predator from the opening that I saw the movie a few times before I even noticed the opening. But wouldn't it have been a more interesting movie if you didn't find out the thing was an alien until the third act?

And The Thing - it's so unncessary. They go out and find the spaceship encased in the ice. You don't need a scene showing it crash landing. WTF?


Any sexual tyrannosaurs out there have a comment?


The opening shot of The Thing sucks, but I've heard the theory that the aliens on board that particular UFO are not 'the thing' itself, but is instead a different alien race going through their own difficulties due to being assimilated by it. Hence, it crashing. Don't know how well that pans out, but it at least gives that scene a vague purpose for being there


Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:39 am
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Death Proof wrote:
And someone tell me I'm not the only Lake Placid fan. (aka Ally McBeal goes to the woods)

Great cast, especially Brendan Gleeson and Oliver Platt, plus bonus foul-mouthed Betty White which pretty much reinvigorated her career.

I didn't expect much from it having seen the awful sequels first, but I liked the original more than I expected. It doesn't have as much action or scares that other monster films do, but I think it makes up for this with its witty script and the fact that it doesn't take itself too seriously. I also agree that the cast was good.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:42 am
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Death Proof wrote:
Opinions:

Do you think John McTiernan and/or John Carpenter regret putting the shots of the UFOs in the beginning of Predator and The Thing? Wouldn't that special FX money be better if it was spent on marketing and advertising?

Funny enough, I so rarely caught Predator from the opening that I saw the movie a few times before I even noticed the opening. But wouldn't it have been a more interesting movie if you didn't find out the thing was an alien until the third act?

And The Thing - it's so unncessary. They go out and find the spaceship encased in the ice. You don't need a scene showing it crash landing. WTF?


Any sexual tyrannosaurs out there have a comment?

I keep forgetting the ship at the beginning of Predator too, haha. But I think I'm with you on that movie. The way the characters try to engage the threat is kind of the point of the point of the movie, so it doesn't seem fair that we're clued in to its true nature before they are. With The Thing we learn what it is along with the characters (and its effects shot is neat), so I don't mind it in that movie.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:43 am
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Rock wrote:
Yeah, Shock Waves I can see others finding too shapeless and slow to amount to anything, but it ended up working for me.

Do you mind elaborating on your thoughts on Castle Freak?

(I'd actually spoilered the post for length, but it ended up being the last post on the page, so it was a meaningless gesture, haha.)


Shock Waves is great. Yes it is slow, but it maintains a unrelentingly laid back, creepy tone for most of its running time.

Also Burial Ground and Nightmare City and Howling 2 are also all great. All monumentally silly in many ways, but all distinctly weird and entertaining.

The Car has never done much for me. Maybe I watched it in a bad mood, but it just felt like a bunch of dead air.

Long Weekend is really fantastic. Real slow burn, and as you mention, is so underplayed to barely feel like a horror film. But it definitely is as it can't help but get under your skin.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:44 am
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crumbsroom wrote:

The opening shot of The Thing sucks, but I've heard the theory that the aliens on board that particular UFO are not 'the thing' itself, but is instead a different alien race going through their own difficulties due to being assimilated by it. Hence, it crashing. Don't know how well that pans out, but it at least gives that scene a vague purpose for being there

I'm not quite sure that's what Carpenter was going for. Regardless, since the opening shot isn't that significant, I forget it's even there by the end.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:45 am
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Me three for Shock Waves. :up: Give it another shot some time, Wooley.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:59 am
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I'm fine with idea of the spaceship in The Thing. It's the execution that's lacking. The ship is pretty cheesy looking, as if it were from Spaced Invaders.
If it looked like something from Alien or Star Trek: The Motion Picture, for example, it may have worked better.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 2:20 am
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Death Proof wrote:
Opinions:

Do you think John McTiernan and/or John Carpenter regret putting the shots of the UFOs in the beginning of Predator and The Thing? Wouldn't that special FX money be better if it was spent on marketing and advertising?


They probably do, but also it's not like the marketing campaigns for those movies would've hid the information that an alien is involved, so losing that mystery is probably not the disaster it might be for something more indie that can build word of mouth off of a film's mysteries (like Hereditary or something).

I don't know if studio money is that fluid that it can be transferred from special effects budget to marketing/advertising. The former is handled by the specific production, while the latter is handled by the studio itself. (But your point is obviously taken - they could've put the money to better use on another element of the production.)

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 2:23 am
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crumbsroom wrote:

The opening shot of The Thing sucks, but I've heard the theory that the aliens on board that particular UFO are not 'the thing' itself, but is instead a different alien race going through their own difficulties due to being assimilated by it. Hence, it crashing. Don't know how well that pans out, but it at least gives that scene a vague purpose for being there

That actually makes more sense than a formless, virus-like lifeform having a spaceship.

I heard somewhere that the studio put the spaceship shot at the beginning of Predator without consulting the director.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 2:43 am
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Death Proof wrote:
Opinions:

Do you think John McTiernan and/or John Carpenter regret putting the shots of the UFOs in the beginning of Predator and The Thing? Wouldn't that special FX money be better if it was spent on marketing and advertising?

And The Thing - it's so unncessary. They go out and find the spaceship encased in the ice. You don't need a scene showing it crash landing. WTF?

Any sexual tyrannosaurs out there have a comment?


I said this in my last write-up of the movie that that is the toughest part for me to get over so I'm glad it's at the beginning. I love the movie but that opening makes me wanna throw up in my mouth a little. It really is tonally so off with the rest of the film.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 2:55 am
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Rock wrote:
Yeah, Shock Waves I can see others finding too shapeless and slow to amount to anything, but it ended up working for me.

Do you mind elaborating on your thoughts on Castle Freak?

(I'd actually spoilered the post for length, but it ended up being the last post on the page, so it was a meaningless gesture, haha.)

I would love to give you my whole long-ass write-up on Castle Freak, but unfortunately it was 2 years ago on RT and is lost forever.
What I can remember is that I felt the backstory of the antagonist was well-developed, especially for this genre and compared to similar films, and I thought he was genuinely frightening. I thought the voyeuristic elements made it even creepier, especially with the daughter (obviously), but not in an exploitative way, in a tension-building way. I thought the tension ratcheted up consistently throughout the film. I had some genuine fear for these people. Of course, Combs cooky intensity added a lot to that role. And I loved the setting, I thought it was eerie and effective throughout.
I feel like, we talk about a lot of bad movies here and we give a LOT of them a pass because, sure, they're garbage, but we've seen so much garbage that, eh, this is actually decent garbage or this is such garbage that it's fun how garbage it is or whatever, and I can't see putting a competently-made, well-developed horror movie with some unique elements to it below ANY of those films. So, for example, to me Castle Freak is just BETTER than Shock Waves. It's simply a better movie in almost every way. It is probably better than half the horror movies we talk about around here. Kinda by definition. And when so much of what we talk about around here is actual garbage that we just happen to kinda like, a movie that isn't garbage and has something legit to offer and isn't well-known, has to be called a "hidden gem".


Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:04 am
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crumbsroom wrote:

The opening shot of The Thing sucks, but I've heard the theory that the aliens on board that particular UFO are not 'the thing' itself, but is instead a different alien race going through their own difficulties due to being assimilated by it. Hence, it crashing. Don't know how well that pans out, but it at least gives that scene a vague purpose for being there

I've also heard that, but it is definitely not on the screen, if you know what I mean.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:05 am
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Death Proof wrote:
And someone tell me I'm not the only Lake Placid fan. (aka Ally McBeal goes to the woods)

Great cast, especially Brendan Gleeson and Oliver Platt, plus bonus foul-mouthed Betty White which pretty much reinvigorated her career.

Absolutely not. I thought it was great fun in the theater and it has held up when I rewatched it. Betty White was great. Oliver Platt always is.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:06 am
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Captain Terror wrote:
Me three for Shock Waves. :up: Give it another shot some time, Wooley.

Alright, alright, alright, I will try it again, maybe next. I have one more write-up to do ahead of it, but I'm at my conference in San Francisco so maybe this weekend.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:09 am
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Torgo wrote:
I'm fine with idea of the spaceship in The Thing. It's the execution that's lacking. The ship is pretty cheesy looking, as if it were from Spaced Invaders.
If it looked like something from Alien or Star Trek: The Motion Picture, for example, it may have worked better.

This may also be the problem.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:09 am
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DaMU wrote:

They probably do, but also it's not like the marketing campaigns for those movies would've hid the information that an alien is involved, so losing that mystery is probably not the disaster it might be for something more indie that can build word of mouth off of a film's mysteries (like Hereditary or something).

I don't know if studio money is that fluid that it can be transferred from special effects budget to marketing/advertising. The former is handled by the specific production, while the latter is handled by the studio itself. (But your point is obviously taken - they could've put the money to better use on another element of the production.)



Here's the original trailer... watch and and try to pretend we haven't seen it already 20 times.

I vaguely remember seeing this trailer when I was a kid (86/87 I would have been around 14 - 15 years old) - I honestly couldn't tell - or wasn't paying that close attention - that it was supposed to be an alien. I assumed it was a terrestrial jungle monster or possibly they were playing at a soldier who was doing the killing.

If you saw this today for the first time, would you get the idea it was an alien hunter?


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Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:33 am
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Wooley wrote:
Absolutely not. I thought it was great fun in the theater and it has held up when I rewatched it. Betty White was great. Oliver Platt always is.



Image

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:44 am
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Image

Had to be done. Carry on.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 5:07 am
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Wooley wrote:
Alright, alright, alright, I will try it again, maybe next. I have one more write-up to do ahead of it, but I'm at my conference in San Francisco so maybe this weekend.

PS--I ignored your advice and watched The Prowler. #YOLO

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 5:19 am
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Death Proof wrote:


Here's the original trailer... watch and and try to pretend we haven't seen it already 20 times.

I vaguely remember seeing this trailer when I was a kid (86/87 I would have been around 14 - 15 years old) - I honestly couldn't tell - or wasn't paying that close attention - that it was supposed to be an alien. I assumed it was a terrestrial jungle monster or possibly they were playing at a soldier who was doing the killing.

If you saw this today for the first time, would you get the idea it was an alien hunter?



I mean... probably? There's a full-body shot of it being non-human toward the end, multiple shots of its clawed fingers, its ability to see our heat is explicitly stated, it's referred to as "it." It's either a human mutant (military-bred or something) or an alien, so between the two I'd guess "alien." I agree with you that the trailer is more obscure than the film's opening, but I still think its alien nature and presence would've been an expectation for many viewers.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 6:20 am
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Huh, so Gareth Evans has a new movie, and it's supposed to hit Netflix tomorrow. I am excite.


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Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:40 am
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I just watched The Strangers: Prey at Night and enjoyed it more than I was expecting to. It’s a standard slasher but it’s got some great cinematography, atmosphere and tension, and one really good jump scare. I liked the more open, outdoorsy trailer park setting which let the filmmakers play with depth of field and using the background to create tension. And credits roll at an hour and eighteen minutes.

The biggest problem is the family. They don’t fit well together. Christina Hendricks is the mom, which is fine, if s little weird that she’d be in a direct to video B slasher that nobody saw. The dad is too young and the “teen” son is way too old. And everyone but Hendricks is terrible at acting.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:20 pm
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I don't normally do this because I like to watch movies beginning to end without commenting, but just because I'm about to pass out:

The first 33 minutes of Pumpkinhead are good and disquieting and are interested in ethical dilemmas (!) and have me wondering what the next 50 minutes contain.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:05 pm
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Captain Terror wrote:
PS--I ignored your advice and watched The Prowler. #YOLO

Dude. What am I fuckin' talkin' to MYSELF over here?


Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:20 pm
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DaMU wrote:

I mean... probably? There's a full-body shot of it being non-human toward the end, multiple shots of its clawed fingers, its ability to see our heat is explicitly stated, it's referred to as "it." It's either a human mutant (military-bred or something) or an alien, so between the two I'd guess "alien." I agree with you that the trailer is more obscure than the film's opening, but I still think its alien nature and presence would've been an expectation for many viewers.

You're right, but I also agree that the movie would have been better if that fact had been a discovery during the film than just stated at the beginning.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:23 pm
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DaMU wrote:
I don't normally do this because I like to watch movies beginning to end without commenting, but just because I'm about to pass out:

The first 33 minutes of Pumpkinhead are good and disquieting and are interested in ethical dilemmas (!) and have me wondering what the next 50 minutes contain.

Oh, man, I wish you had the energy to see it through without fading, it sounds like you're totally on the right track to full enjoyment of it.


Fri Oct 12, 2018 3:25 pm
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Deschain13 wrote:
I just watched The Strangers: Prey at Night and enjoyed it more than I was expecting to. It’s a standard slasher but it’s got some great cinematography, atmosphere and tension, and one really good jump scare. I liked the more open, outdoorsy trailer park setting which let the filmmakers play with depth of field and using the background to create tension. And credits roll at an hour and eighteen minutes.

The biggest problem is the family. They don’t fit well together. Christina Hendricks is the mom, which is fine, if s little weird that she’d be in a direct to video B slasher that nobody saw. The dad is too young and the “teen” son is way too old. And everyone but Hendricks is terrible at acting.



Ugh. I don't get it. No tension, just waiting for the inevitable character deaths one by one. No reasoning behind the killings.

Garbage.

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:10 pm
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Wooley wrote:
You're right, but I also agree that the movie would have been better if that fact had been a discovery during the film than just stated at the beginning.


Oh, I completely agree. I think both films would be better if advertised differently and if the audience were allowed to learn information in tandem with the heroes (instead of us getting outside-the-characters shots of space).

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Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:46 pm
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Has anyone seen the 2004 Belgian movie Calvaire (The Ordeal in English), and if so, is it worth checking out?
A critic compared it to Mandy, so my interest is piqued.

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Sat Oct 13, 2018 1:18 am
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Torgo wrote:
Has anyone seen the 2004 Belgian movie Calvaire (The Ordeal in English), and if so, is it worth checking out?
A critic compared it to Mandy, so my interest is piqued.

I haven't seen Mandy, so I can't comment on that but yes, Calvaire is worth checking out. It's not exactly pleasant, mind you.

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Sat Oct 13, 2018 1:22 am
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Captain Terror wrote:
I haven't seen Mandy, so I can't comment on that but yes, Calvaire is worth checking out. It's not exactly pleasant, mind you.

Noted. It's always the small countries that take the unpleasantness to a whole new level.

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Sat Oct 13, 2018 1:47 am
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Torgo wrote:
Noted. It's always the small countries that take the unpleasantness to a whole new level.

Crumbsroom brought it to my attention on Page 1 of this very thread, if you'd like to read that conversation.

EDIT: And it was page 3 when I finally got around to watching it.

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Sat Oct 13, 2018 2:00 am
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Captain Terror wrote:
I haven't seen Mandy, so I can't comment on that but yes, Calvaire is worth checking out. It's not exactly pleasant, mind you.



I've had Mandy on my computer for 2 weeks. I really need to watch it this weekend.

Really digging season 1 of Daredevil, though.

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Sat Oct 13, 2018 3:02 am
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Death Proof wrote:


I've had Mandy on my computer for 2 weeks. I really need to watch it this weekend.

Really digging season 1 of Daredevil, though.


Yeah, you do. But watch it on the largest screen you can and when you are really set to watch a movie (e.g., not with open tabs).


Sat Oct 13, 2018 3:27 am
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Torgo wrote:
Has anyone seen the 2004 Belgian movie Calvaire (The Ordeal in English), and if so, is it worth checking out?
A critic compared it to Mandy, so my interest is piqued.

Being Belgian myself, I consider Calvaire to be one of the best Belgian movies ever made. It's beautiful in its ugliness.


Sat Oct 13, 2018 3:53 am
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I highly endorse seeing Mandy in a theater if at all possible.


Sat Oct 13, 2018 4:11 am
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Melvin Butterworth wrote:

Yeah, you do. But watch it on the largest screen you can and when you are really set to watch a movie (e.g., not with open tabs).
Turning off all of the lights and having a tasty adult beverage nearby is also recommended.

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Sat Oct 13, 2018 4:12 am
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Slentert wrote:
Being Belgian myself, I consider Calvaire to be one of the best Belgian movies ever made. It's beautiful in its ugliness.
Good to know. I need to check out more Belgian cinema. I've only seen movies by the Dardenne brothers, who are great, but I'm sure there's much more.

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Sat Oct 13, 2018 4:15 am
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The people demand Mandy in the theater.


Sat Oct 13, 2018 4:17 am
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kgaard. wrote:
I highly endorse seeing Mandy in a theater if at all possible.



I'm not driving to fucking Brooklyn.

I was incredibly disappointed at the lack release in the Delaware Valley. Even if NJ theaters don't get something, you can almost be assured a Philly theater would. The closest theaters showing it are in NY, Baltimore and Pittsburgh. Fucking ridiculous.

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Sat Oct 13, 2018 5:00 am
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Fucking A. Probably still won't get it in our area, but one can hope.

By the way, Panos Cosmatos looks exactly like a guy named Panos Cosmatos should look. He's like Guillermo del Toro and Peter Jackson had a baby and raised it on Vodka and borscht.



Image

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Sat Oct 13, 2018 5:04 am
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DaMU wrote:
I don't normally do this because I like to watch movies beginning to end without commenting, but just because I'm about to pass out:

The first 33 minutes of Pumpkinhead are good and disquieting and are interested in ethical dilemmas (!) and have me wondering what the next 50 minutes contain.


Yeah, it's been a while since I've seen Pumpkinhead, and so the exact memory of the mechanics of the movie have faded a bit, but my memory of the excellent exploration of revenge remains.

I think that the film's standout moment is when the worst character (the
teen who is a total jerk at the beginning), offers himself up to the monster if it will save his friends.


That's the kind of moment you just don't tend to see in horror films.


Sat Oct 13, 2018 6:33 am
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Death Proof wrote:


Fucking A. Probably still won't get it in our area, but one can hope.

By the way, Panos Cosmatos looks exactly like a guy named Panos Cosmatos should look. He's like Guillermo del Toro and Peter Jackson had a baby and raised it on Vodka and borscht.



Image


He's actually the son of George Cosmatos, who seemingly built his career by letting the stars of action vehicles ghost direct and executed their visions, which led to a career that produced Rambo: First Bkood pt.2, Cobra and Tombstone (which is the film Panos got his start on as a 2nd unit director).


Sat Oct 13, 2018 7:43 am
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