Lee Russell

Collecting, watching, writing and podcasting about movies.

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  • In the Earth

    In the Earth

    Calling this a "pandemic horror" film is a mislabeling, and frankly selling this wonderful little gem short. Might as well call it "playing the moog in the woods", as you'd be just as close.

    While set in a virus-ravaged world, that's merely a backdrop for our setting. It is much more about human beings searching for connections and answers between nature and each other in a fundamentally changed world. It's in-part a neo-folk horror film, where modern science and old…

  • Fried Barry

    Fried Barry

    The idea of an alien visitor using the worst possible host body to walk among us and observe humanity is a fun concept. A body and mind already fried by drugs, only gets more fried by drugs as the alien uses it to explore the slums of Cape Town. Cue the grime and sleaze. Cue the trippy visuals and neat special effects. But is there much more than that? Not really.

    I went into this expecting a crazy, gross-out horror…

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  • Brawl in Cell Block 99

    Brawl in Cell Block 99

    ★★★★½

    Wow. Unflinching brutality, and probably a better throw-back to pure exploitation than anything most more well-known retro throw-backs could ever hope to produce. Instead of trying to recapture that sort of low budget film from the 1970s, this film just is that sort of film, if that makes sense. It's not a recreation of a style, it just is a pure exploitation film. Grimy, mean, violent, driven. The only difference is that it has top notch production values and casting in its favour. Some of this made me cringe and it made me take notice. It's something. It's beautiful.

  • Psycho Goreman

    Psycho Goreman

    ★★★★½

    Being a major fan of the now defunct Astron-6, any projects to come from the members are always going to be highly anticipated by me, so in some ways this sort of film is made for me to like it. And guess what? Yeah, I liked it. I liked it a lot. The creative blend of 1980s nostalgia-fueled imagery; cartoon logic; the practical effects in both the prosthetics and the gruesome violence; and the detached and often dark sense of…