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  • House

    House

    ★★★★½

    Not since Ishii's Funky Forest has a Japanese movie made me laugh and get squicked out the way Hausu did. It's so batshit it's its own genre, with the only other film that might accompany it in said genre being Evil Dead. But Evil Dead is sedate and logical next to this. AWESOME.

  • Father Frost

    Father Frost

    ★★★½

    Amazing what filmmakers can do with the simple act of reversing film shots, innit? Adorable and charming and just a little bit batshit, even without Joel and the Robots down in the corner of the screen making fun of it.

  • Only the Young

    Only the Young

    ★★★½

    You're either going to admire the aimless artlessness on display here (and recall your own version of it from your own teen years, whether they were 30 years ago or last week), or it's going to drive you crazy. I admired it, even as it drove home for me how ultimately nothing has changed or progressed since I was mumbling around (in, admittedly, much less cool landscapes. I would have killed for a neat abandoned house to skulk around in) Black Flag tee-shirts in the '80s.

  • Jupiter Ascending

    Jupiter Ascending

    ★★★

    This met my expectations exactly. It was exactly as stupid and exactly as pretty as I'd been led to believe it would be. Not 100% sure it was worth the 80-mile round trip (no movie theaters in my tiny town) but it was diverting enough.

  • The Joneses

    The Joneses

    ★★★½

    I was on board for the cynical yucks until the ending. Would have been a solid four stars but for that. Now I just want to slap the producers.

  • Beyond Re-Animator

    Beyond Re-Animator

    ★★½

    High production values and hilarious gore are the highlights of a deeply unnecessary film. I hope Jeffery Coombs was well paid.

    Earned an extra half-star for the line "guilty as charred."

  • Knight Without Armour

    Knight Without Armour

    ★★★★½

    Sumptuous costume drama with Dietrich at her most glamorous (her makeup dewy perfection even when she's been buried in dead leaves or has hair full of straw) and Donat at his most dashing. A lot of effort was made to make England look like Russia, and there's a lot of period detail. Lots of melodrama and a few improbable escapes, but a lot of economy of storytelling that we don't seem to get much these days. Well worth seeing!

  • The Ugly Swans

    The Ugly Swans

    ★★★★

    Wonderfully atmospheric (though the "atmosphere" is mostly water.
    Rain, rain, rain. Like Uzumaki levels of rain) look at a world partially occupied by mutant humans, smarter than the rest of us but in need of a specialized environment. The engine of change is a virus that is, apparently, voluntarily acquired; it makes one weird looking, in need of infrared light (in this movie, of course, we just see ordinary red, because duh) and a LOT of moisture. Also, able to…

  • The Baron of Arizona

    The Baron of Arizona

    ★★★★

    This is classic hokey Hollywood at its hokiest. But if you can forgive that, if you can forgive lily-white actresses with nearly impenetrable New Yawk accents playing gypsy (not Romany, but gypsy) women and how much Spain and Arizona just happen to look exactly like California (and if you can't, you are probably incapable of enjoying movies and I feel sorry for you), then you're in for a treat. Vincent Price is mesmerizing as the infamous forger and swindler James…

  • Hands Over the City

    Hands Over the City

    ★★★★½

    A publicly owned apartment building collapses. It was very old, and is next to a demolition site where a private company -- owned by a member of the city council -- plans to erect fancy new buildings that will make that councilman and all his cronies richer than they already are. Whose fault is the collapse?

    Made in the early 60s in Naples, Italy, this film is basically The Wire before The Wire was, though it focuses mostly on the…

  • Equinox

    Equinox

    ★★½

    Creepy park rangers! Horrible relationships! The Necronomicon! The most disgusting kiss ever! Terrible stop motion monsters! Including a giant gorillizard! Basically, an early take on Evil Dead, but it takes itself seriously, and had even less of an effects budget. I believe it started life as a student film, so absolutely forgive the visible wires, the fluctuating hair and wardrobe, etc. A marvelous waste of time.

  • Satan's Brew

    Satan's Brew

    ★★★½

    Insufferable protagonist, check. Annoyingly helpless/clueless/willingly degraded women, check. Grotesque behavior on all sides, check. Tantrums and animal noises for no discernable reason, check. A thoroughly unpleasant viewing experience, but it sticks to its guns. It's consistent in its view of human horribleness. It's appallingly funny. Somebody tell me why I watch these damn films.