RSS feed for Dan
  • Video World

    Video World 2013

    ★★★ Watched 28 Sep, 2015

    Sweet little short-form documentary about the closing of an independent video rental store.

    It's shabby (near the beginning, the exact same shot is used twice within a minute of itself) but is worth watching for a) the plain ol' small-town folk who are interviewed (that sweet old lady bemoaning content being 'piped in' is just the best) and b) The Bible - which is just a binder of flattened and numbered VHS slipcovers for porno flicks (so you can 'order' the number without saying a bawdy title aloud).

  • The Visit

    The Visit 2015

    ★★★½ Watched 26 Sep, 2015

    I quite enjoyed my time with The Visit - it's funny in the right kind of ways, and lands the kind of tone that I feel like CREEP was trying to hit.

    It's mostly a comedy, and though the scares didn't work for me at all, I didn't mind. The parts that should have been stupid, logically, didn't bother me (how crusty can pancake batter get?!)

    This one sits beside Willow Creek as great entries into a genre that most…

  • The Borrower

    The Borrower 1991

    ★★★ Watched 26 Sep, 2015

    Had super high hopes for this movie, and left a little bit disappointed.

    Some hilarious moments and great effects (though oddly they felt cut-around, but I couldn't figure out if I had an edited down copy or not) but overall I wasn't in total love with it.

    Definitely an entertaining and funny film that could grow on me with some more time.

  • Remote Control

    Remote Control 1988

    ★★★★ Watched 26 Sep, 2015

    This film is an absolute blast; like TerrorVision by way of Videodrome for the VHS set, this bonkers and hilarious tale of a VHS from space is a magnetic slab of silly entertainment that lands smack dab right in my comfort zone.

    Deserves to be more well known than it is, and likely Jeff Lieberman's best film. EDIT: OOPS, I mean, best film after Just Before Dawn, of course, which is phenomenal.

  • Bunny Lake Is Missing

    Bunny Lake Is Missing 1965

    ★★★★ Watched 26 Sep, 2015

    Well, that took a few turns, didn't it?

  • Sicario

    Sicario 2015

    ★★★★½ Watched 25 Sep, 2015

    Save it for the podcast(s).

    That said: daaaaaamn!

  • Miami Blues

    Miami Blues 1990

    ★★★ Watched 25 Sep, 2015

    Demme-lite thriller/drama/comedy that rides high on 90s vibes, pulsing black comedy, romance and violence together into a Tarantino-like pulp.

    It doesn't all work together as a whole, but this might be one that I need to sit with and revisit at a later time. I certainly dug what it was going for, but felt a bit detached from the film.

  • Next of Kin

    Next of Kin 1982

    ★★★★ Watched 23 Sep, 2015 1

    Next of Kin is a very stylish Australian horror-thriller (accent on the latter) with oodles of atmosphere and talent to burn.

    From the quite brilliantly utilized thudding-soundtrack and swooshing camera moves, to the slow-burn pace with fantastic editing, there's a lot going on here that really worked for me.

    It definitely takes a while to kick into gear, and though the plotting was a little bit obtuse in moments, overall this was a fantastic little sleeper hit that I'd highly…

  • Lady in White

    Lady in White 1988

    ★★★★ Watched 23 Sep, 2015

    Lady in White shows an immense step-up in quality for director Frank LaLoggia. This Halloween-ready ghost story starts off on a Spielbergian note, before becoming dream-like and atmospheric, all while keeping a fairly tight reign on the satisfying plotting - and even throws in some scenes of totally genuine surprise.

    The only real negative on this movie is the dated effects, which will either charm you or take you out of the mood.

    One of those movies that will have…

  • Sweet Sixteen

    Sweet Sixteen 1983

    ★★½ Watched 23 Sep, 2015

    Sits a little uncomfortably on the line between actual-slasher and murder-mystery, as the mystery aspects play a little corn-ball, while the slasher elements aren't quite pushed hard enough to make this one entertaining in that over-the-top kind of way.

    Despite some tonal inconsistencies, there's a good handful of things to like about this entry into the genre; Dana Kimmell shines as the Nancy Drew-esque sheriff's daughter, and I kind of wished the film had been focused entirely on her.


  • Fear No Evil

    Fear No Evil 1981

    ★★½ Watched 22 Sep, 2015

    This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Frank LaLoggia directs a wildy ambitious, completely uneven yet oddly charming debut horror film that swerves from ye olde horror to teenage revenge picture, through to reincarnation tale and much, much more.

    It'd almost be cause for celebration, if interest didn't fluctuate so wildly from unintentionally funny to legitimately engrossing so often - the scenes with the teenager seem to be flirting with homosexual themes (potentially on purpose, but maybe not?) which make for an interesting twist, but the re-incarnation…

  • Eye For An Eye

    Eye For An Eye 1996

    ★★★ Watched 21 Sep, 2015

    Sally Field stars in this emotionally manipulative, gender-flipped update on Death Wish that retains an aggressively conservative stand-your-ground bent; aside from Kiefer Sutherland's sleazy murderer, the movie also seems to posit that limp justice systems, lesbian mothers who happen to be undercover agents, porno mags and the deterioration of the american family are also to blame.

    So, Eye for an Eye is politically insidious in many ways - but I also enjoyed it as entertainment despite its off-putting nature. I…