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  • Halloween

    Halloween

    ★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    The first two acts of this are pedestrian - David Gordon Green either doesn't know or doesn't care how to structure a horror movie - but goddamn it is a breath of fresh air to see a horror movie set up and then pay off character beats without a bullshit twist ending or plot swerve. The directness of the last act - Laurie Strode's lifelong preparation actually works! - is very satisfying. Two stars for the first two-thirds, four stars for the last act.

  • Fyre

    Fyre

    ★½

    As expected this is much worse than Fyre Fraud. Whereas that documentary persuasively argues that many people were culpable for the debacle (not least the broseph assholes at Jerry Media), Fyre makes the nonsensical & unethical claim that Billy McFarland was entirely to blame. Indeed, it takes many people - some of whom financed this film! - to pull off a scam of this magnitude.

  • Housewife

    Housewife

    this movie is proof that god hates us and has abandoned us and we are alone in the universe with can evrenol and it sucks

  • Fyre Fraud

    Fyre Fraud

    ★★★★

    So Hulu scooped Netflix by surprise-dropping Fyre Fraud 4 days before Netflix's Fyre (which is a wonderfully shady move & is addressed at the end of the film*) and, on top of that, this is so good that I'll be shocked if it's the lesser of the two. Everything here is so abjectly bonkers that it's hard to believe it's real, but it is and it's amazing.

    * Fyre Fraud makes the claim (which I see no reason to disbelieve since…

  • Hatchet

    Hatchet

    ★★½

    Supernatural horror is my favorite horror subgenre and the slasher film is my least favorite, for reasons that are flip sides of the same coin: supernatural horror is all about the creepy buildup and less about the payoff, which means - if done well - about 90% of a ghosts & shit movie is satisfying to me. Conversely, slasher films are all about the payoff (= gore gags) and you have to sit through a bunch of buildup to get there,…

  • As Above, So Below

    As Above, So Below

    ★½

    Even stupider the second time around. This is possibly the dumbest found footage film I've seen, and I'm a fan of The Devil Inside so that's saying something

  • The Grudge

    The Grudge

    ★★★★

    This is imo the most successful domestic remake of a foreign horror film and it succeeds for two reasons: an uncommon degree of fidelity to the source material (including keeping the original director) and not moving the setting to the US. Cannily, this uses the dislocation felt by the protagonists in an unfamiliar culture to heighten the horror. This also has some of my favorite sound design in supernatural horror (shoutout to the scene where the sound of a bicycle…

  • Insidious

    Insidious

    ★★★★★

    James Wan's horror films have had a district trajectory, from grotty low budget speed-ramped 90s-style goofiness (Saw, Dead Silence*) to a more refined, classical style (the Conjuring films). Insidious is his only movie that has its feet firmly planted in both worlds: it's exceptionally well made but there is also A LOT of weird shit (Lin Shaye's gas mask in the seance scene, the bonkers design of the red-faced demon, the ghosts in The Further that are straight out of…

  • Altered

    Altered

    ★★★★½

    This is the goddamn Citizen Kane of hillbillies-vs-aliens movies. (Also the practical effects in this movie are A+++, especially the way that Sanchez goes all in on the dude-in-a-rubber-suit monster)

  • The Children

    The Children

    ★★★★½

    The Children is the rare horror film that exists in the intersection of good filmmaking, good acting, and intentional no-holds-barred bad taste (here evidenced by a large amount of child murder). This alone would make it a minor masterpiece, but in addition it's also one of the finest entries in the "everybody gets what they deserve" horror subgenre. Indeed, these characters are loathsome; the movie knows they're loathsome; and it is a total cathartic joy to see them get fucked up hard. This is a mean-spirited taboo-smashing juggernaut of a genre film and imho a modern classic.

  • Black Christmas

    Black Christmas

    ★★★½

    Generic Christmas slasher elevated through sheer force of will by Glen Morgan's stylish direction, which is way better than usual for this sort of thing - he nails a very specific tone between serious & silly which is exactly right for the genre. I wish he'd get to direct more films.

  • The Nun

    The Nun

    ★½

    Imagine the "goes to 11" scene from Spinal Tap, except they're talking about a horror film