Mel’s 5 Second Review: The Cursed

The Cursed (2022)
Boyd Holbrook, Kelly Reilly, Alistair Petrie, Amelia Crouch, Max Macintosh, Roxane Duran, Nigel Betts, Stuart Bowman, Tommy Rodger, Aine Rose Daly
Directed by: Sean Ellis

the cursed

First, let me say that the trailer for this film is incredibly misleading. I thought this film was a ghost story. Imagine my surprise when I found out it was nothing of the sort.

After a horrible slaughter of Gypsies, a small late-19th century town in France is plagued by what seems to be animal attacks. A pathologist comes to town to try help, but he seems to have an agenda of his own.

First the good. The film is beautiful. They take full advantage of the French countryside, the costuming is gorgeous, and most of the effects are great. The story is interesting, even if it’s a little basic. (I paused for a long time here, deciding whether I should include spoilers in this review or not. I decided against it.) The acting is quite good. And there were a few things that I’d never seen before in a film of this type, so that was surprising, and nice. The bad? Well, there’s not much, to be honest. The film is a little slow at times, but it never feels like a slog. The creature effects are a little janky at times, but whenever there’s practical effects, they’re great. The beginning was a little gory for my tastes, but they eased up for the rest of the film.

All in all, it was a pretty good film. Probably not one that I’d line up for a rewatch, but still quite good. 7.5/10

M.

This film is currently on Amazon Prime, and available for purchase on YouTube.

Mel’s 10 Things About… Netherworld

Netherworld (1992)
Michael Bendetti, Denise Gentile, Holly Floria, Anjanette Comer, Robert Burr, Robert Sampson, Alex Datcher, and George Kelly

Netherworld

(SPOILERS INCOMING… but since it’s a movie from the 90’s, I’m not too worried)
1. The lead actor, Michael Bendetti, who plays Corey, is a stone cold fox. Now that that’s out of the way, we can continue.
2. The story is interesting, if a little all over the place. The bird people, the “is she bad or isn’t she?”, the flying hand, all intriguing enough to keep me watching.
3. Lots of boobies, but they don’t add much to the story. Pretty gratuitous. Which, I suppose, is par for the course for a 90’s horror film, especially one by Full Moon.
4.  The pacing left a little to be desired. Scenes were either too long, or too short, and it really jumped all over the place.
5. The music wasn’t great, and often didn’t fit the scenes. The love music for Corey and Delores was cheesey to the Nth degree, it almost took me out of the moment.
6. Unintentional laughter was had. Some scenes were so “wtf” that my bf and I just had to laugh out loud.
7. The final plot twist, while kind of obvious after a while, was still good and gave a lot to the story.
8. The idea of turning bad people into birds was interesting and something I’d never seen before, or since.
9. The love interest is introduced as “jailbait”, which makes Corey’s interest in her a little questionable. I mean, she doesn’t look underage, but you don’t introduce someone over 18 as jailbait, so…
10. Overall, despite its flaws, I rather liked it. It was fun and entertaining, definitely one of the better Full Moon pictures.

6.5/10

Mel’s 5 Second Review: The Conjuring, The Devil Made Me Do It

Conjuring 3The Conjuring, The Devil Made Me Do It (2021)
Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga, Ruairi O’Connor, Sarah Catherine Hook, Julian Hilliard, John Noble, Shannon Kook, and Eugenie Bondurant
Directed by: Michael Chaves

This is the third instalment in the wildly popular The Conjuring films. And honestly, it has not lost any of its steam. Or thrills.

After the intense exorcism of young David, Arne invites the demon into himself instead of the boy. Just when things look like they’ve gone back to normal, Arne starts seeing things, which escalates into him killing a man. Enter demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren, who convince the defence lawyer to plead innocent due to demonic possession.

“Based on a true story”, and yes, I’m using giant quotations for that. I don’t believe a word of it, but I can’t deny that I love pretty much everything about this film. The love story between Ed and Lorraine is wonderful, even if in real life they were nothing but scam artists. Fans of the other two Conjuring films might find this one a little different, a little slower, but I found it great. All of the acting and effects were stellar, as expected. They did a good job making Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga 50-ish. I couldn’t tell if it was done digitally or with makeup, so job well done. The story was more detective-like, with Ed and Lorraine trying to figure out what happened. My dad actually found the film too slow, enjoying only the beginning and end, but I thought the pacing was just fine. But it’s true that if you don’t like slower films, then I would not reccomend to watch this. All in all, I thought it was bomb, and it gets an almost perfect 9/10 from me.

This film is currently available for rental and buying on YouTube (which is where I buy my films) and Amazon Prime. Enjoy!

M.

Mel’s 5 Second Review: The Seventh Day

The Seventh Day (2021)
Guy Pearce, Vadhir Derbez, Brady Jenness, Stephen Lang, Robin Bartlett, Keith David, and Chris Galust
Directed by: Justin P Lange

A young priest fresh out of seminary school gets paired up with a hardened exorcist to take on the case of a young boy who killed his entire family with an axe.

First, let me say that the acting was all around sketchy, even from Guy Pearce, who looked like he gave no fucks (but that could just be the character), but especially the possessed boy, who was downright cringe-worthy at times. I don’t like to be too hard on child actors, cause it’s a tough gig, but possession films are a hard enough sell without the possessed writhing around like bacon. The younger priest, played by Vadhir Derbez (who I’ve never heard of before), was, to quote another reviewer, “seemingly in a frozen, detached mode of vacancy”. I had a good laugh at that, since it’s pretty true.

What I can say good about it, is it had some good ideas. I was expecting a bland, “just an exorcism movie” kind of film, and while a lot of it is that, there’s just enough different to make it interesting. The makeup effects were pretty well done, I have to admit, all except the “smiles”, which you’ll know what I mean by that if you see it. But I don’t think those were done with makeup anyways, pretty sure those were done with (rather mediocre) CGI. And the end twist (cause every movie’s gotta have a twist!) was actually pretty good, even if I did see it coming. So I give it a 6/10, and would recommend cautiously.

This film is currently streaming on Netflix Canada.
M.

Mel’s 10 Things About… Poltergeist

Poltergeist
(2015) Sam Rockwell, Rosemarie DeWitt, Kennedi Clements, Jared Harris, Kyle Catlett, Jane Adams, Saxon Sharbino, Susan Heyward, Nicholas Braun

poltergiest-2015

 

{SPOILERS INCOMING}
1. The beginning was really slow, and really boring. *yawn*
2. There were one or two good scenes, but on the whole the acting was pretty terrible.
3. Are we meant to believe that a poor family, with neither parent working, can buy a house? Especially one of that size? “Bad neighbourhood” my ass! Film-makers seem to have no concept of what bad neighbourhoods really look like. Poor people don’t buy big houses, they get crappy little apartments. Why make them poor, anyways? It added nothing to the story.
4. The film got better as time went one, but really, that’s not saying much.
5. There was also nothing scary about the film. Every time they tried to scare, I found it funny.
6. The only part that was even a little scary was the toy clown scene. Cause yeah, I hate clowns.
7. Considering that almost everything else is identical, why change the family’s names? Oh, cause the kids had to have “cool” modern names like Madison and Griffin. Ugh.
8. The only thing remotely interesting in the film was the depiction of the “other side”, even though the bad CGI made it look like a video game.
9. Carrigan’s last moments and sacrifice were made meaningless by the fact that he didn’t stay dead, which they said many times during the film would happen should anyone living go to the light.
10. Now to compare it to the original for a bit. The story was all there, but it simply didn’t have the interest-holding power of the original. The family was so obnoxious that I really didn’t care what happened to them. Why did they turn Tangina into a dude?? I think this pissed me off the most, even though I generally do like Jared Harris. And making him a ghost hunter on tv just added to the level of obnoxiousness that was already pretty high. So… no, I didn’t like this film.

3/10

Mel’s 5 Second Review: The Pyramid

The Pyramid
(2014) Ashley Hinshaw, James Buckley, Denis O’Hare, Christa Nicola, Amir K, Faycal Attougui

pyramid

I almost turned this film off as soon as it began because of the found footage style. I can’t stand it. I decided to go ahead and give it a try anyways, since I paid for it, and was happy to see that only part of it was in that style, the rest was normal film. So all the worst parts of found footage films, like running with the camera, static, blinking lights, etc, were thankfully missing from this film. There was only one actor I’d heard of (Denis O’Hare, from American Horror Story), and the acting ranged from bad to decent, but unfortunately nothing better than that. It’s pretty much a by-the-numbers creature feature (and I knew it was going to be, but since it was about pyramids and ancient Egyptian lore, I couldn’t help myself), but it was well enough done and even had some good, tense scenes. The big reveal at the end was pretty darn cool, but unfortunately the FX couldn’t keep up with their idea, and the monster (I won’t spoil as to who it is just in case anyone should want to see the film) looks very cheap. A shame, really. All in all, looking past the not-so-great effects and mediocre acting, this is a pretty good tomb crawler, so earns its score of 7/10.

This film isn’t currently on Netflix, but there are full copies on YouTube. Enjoy 🙂

 

M.

Mel’s 5 Second Review: Starry Eyes

Starry Eyes
(2014) Alexandra Essoe, Amanda Fuller, Noah Segan, Fabianne Therese, Maria Olsen, Louis Dezseran, Marc Senter, Shane Coffey, Natalie Castillo, Pat Healy

starry eyes

This film’s been on my to-watch list since it came out, and after seeing some good reviews, I decided to go ahead and watch it last night. The concept is pretty generic, done to death really, but has just enough of a twist that it stays interesting. It gives an unflinching glimpse into the lives of struggling actors, so much so that it’s painful to watch at times. The film is shot beautifully, and the acting ranges from atrocious to good. All of that said, it was boring. Boring, boring, boring. The only reason I made it through the whole film was because I was watching with my sister, and she wanted to finish it, despite being bored herself. The film was just over 90 minutes, yet felt longer than Lord of the Rings. It wasn’t scary, at all, just occasionally gross, and to me there’s nothing interesting in that. And seriously, what the hell is up with her friends?? That one who keeps putting her down, the supposed best friend who tells everything told to her in confidence. With friends like those it’s no wonder she went nuts. And by the time the slicing and dicing starts happening, I was just happy to get these simpering morons off the screen. The end was good, I’ll give it that (even if I’d already figured it out), but still not enough to save this turd. 3/10

This film is currently streaming on Netflix. Watch at your own peril.

M.

Mel’s 5 Second Review: The Last Exorcism Part 2

The Last Exorcism Part 2
(2014) Ashley Bell, Julia Garner, Spencer Treat Clark, Tarra Riggs, Muse Watson, David Jensen, Louis Herthum, Erica Michelle, E Roger Mitchell

the-last-exorcism-part-2

So, I find myself not really having anything to say about this film. It wasn’t bad, but wasn’t great either. It picks up where the first one left off, with Nell escaping the woods and ending up in a hospital, then a troubled women’s home. A few months later, wouldn’t you know it, strange things start happening again. It’s different that the first one in the way that there isn’t really much possession going on, it’s more about the beast trying to get back in. The acting was decent, the writing decent, the locale decent, this film is all together decent, and ultimately forgettable. Despite it’s decentness, I can’t really recommend this film. It was just too… bland. And so it gets a bland score from me, 6/10.

I’m not sure if this film is on Netflix yet, I taped it off of TMN. If you’re interested enough to check it out, have at it.

 

M.

Mel’s 5 Second Review: Solstice

Solstice
(2008) Elisabeth Harnois, Shawn Ashmore, Amanda Seyfried, Hilarie Burton, Matt O’Leary, Tyler Hoechlin, R Lee Ermey, Jenna Hildebrand

solstice

SPOILERS AHEAD

Sigh… so it was the boyfriend. Just as I figured it would be from the beginning. They really need to move away from this cliché. It’s worn out its welcome. Years ago, it would have been the creepy old guy, but that’s changed too. Now the creepy old guy is invariably a nice guy who just had something awful happen to him to explain his weird behaviour. Case in point, this weird guy had a grand daughter go missing. Besides the warily predictable plot, the film isn’t bad. The acting is generally pretty good, the cast is pretty, and the location is beautiful. Although if I have to see Amanda Seyfried silently over-enunciate a word again I might have to punch her. Seriously, she did it no less than 6 times, “ohhkaayy”, “thaaank youu”, “reaaally?”. If I had a friend who constantly did that, we’d be having a few words :-p On the whole it wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t great either. It gets a decent 6.5/10 from me.

This film is currently streaming on Netflix UK.

M.