Horror

Movie Review: Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)

When I reviewed the first “Unfriended” film in 2015, I described it as a time capsule; an inside joke between its creators and anyone familiar with the technology it uniquely and realistically integrated that would only fully pay off if/when, years later, its original audience watched younger, uninitiated viewers try to understand it outside of…

Movie Review: The First Purge (2018)

“Are you an angry person?” “Who are you angry at?” “Are you ever inclined to hurt someone?” The First Purge begins on Staten Island, where evaluation teams interview prospective participants in a new experiment organized by the New Founding Fathers of America (NFFA), a political party organized as an alternative to the existing system. On…

Movie Review: A Taste of Phobia (2017)

A Taste of Phobia never threatens to touch greatness. But, like all horror anthologies, there are inspired moments and passable individual efforts. You just need to filter out the hairs in the soup. Thankfully, I’ve brought my sieve. This is a collection of 14 micro-movies, mostly pertaining to body horror. Each short is named for…

Movie Review: Hereditary (2018)

Hereditary begins after a 78-year-old woman, Ellen, dies, leaving her daughter Annie (Toni Collette, “Krampus”), teenage grandchildren Peter (Alex Wolff, “Coming Through the Rye”) and Charlie (Milly Shapiro), and their father Steve (Gabriel Byrne, “The 33”) alone in the house they’d shared at the end of her life. That’s one thing made eloquently and devastatingly…

Movie Review: Inheritance (2017)

I know how it looks. Ari Aster’s “Hereditary” is just becoming this year’s classy horror breakout hit, and here’s a lousy, straight-to-VOD knock-off with a conspicuously similar title, right? Well, there are no coincidences in marketing, but it turns out that Inheritance is actually a decent psychological thriller: Atmospheric, well-played and well-made, and dead serious….

Movie Review: The Executioners (2018)

“Scribbled, shot and cut by Giorgio Serafini,” read the titles at the end of The Executioners, as Tim Polecat’s jaunty song “Another Word for Hate” bounces on the soundtrack, as if what we just saw was all a bit of tongue-in-cheek fun. But there’s nothing fun about Serafini’s hateful home invasion horror movie. Four twenty-something…

Movie Review: The Endless (2017)

Ignoring Thomas Wolfe’s observation that “You can’t go home again,” brothers Justin (Justin Benson, “Dementia”) and Aaron Smith (Aaron Moorhead, “Contracted: Phase II”), as an expression of completion, return to a California cult from which they had escaped ten years ago. Written and directed by Benson and Moorhead, The Endless is a low-budget psychological drama…

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