John Barrie

John Barrie

Manager of custodians. Sometimes writer. Horror fan.

Favorite films

  • Inglourious Basterds
  • Conan the Barbarian
  • High Tension
  • The Rocky Horror Picture Show

Recent activity

All
  • Anatomy of a Murder

    ★★★★½

  • Dracula

    ★★★★

  • Starship Troopers

    ★★★★

  • Astonishing Tales of Terror: Rocktapussy!

    ★★½

Recent reviews

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  • Anatomy of a Murder

    Anatomy of a Murder

    ★★★★½

    Maybe some cracks are showing in the film code?

    It must have been scandalous for audiences to see a film that just says the word rape instead of having to allude to it. 

    I really liked Anatomy of a Murder, the way that it combines the DNA for all of our current courtroom procedurals with noir sensibilities.

    What really puts it over the top are the performances. Jimmy Stewart is great here, but so is everyone else. I especially liked Lee Remick as the rape victim/“femme fatale,” and George C. Scott as a prosecution lawyer. 

    Definitely a winner.

  • Dracula

    Dracula

    ★★★★

    It took me a second to adjust to the Hammer aesthetic—blood that looks like paint, castles that look like high school theater sets—but once my initial resistance faded, I fell in love with this movie. I’d heard a lot about Christopher Lee’s Dracula, and I still prefer Lugosi’s mysterious European count, but what really sold me on this movie was Peter Cushing’s Van Helsing. This is the first time that the vampire hunter has not felt like a second fiddle to Dracula but an actual equal in stature. I can see why my horror-loving co-worker swears by Hammer.

Popular reviews

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  • Whiplash

    Whiplash

    ★★★★★

    Just stunning. I don’t know that I have a well composed review right now; suffice to say that this was an acclaimed movie that lived up to the hype. Impeccable.

  • New Nightmare

    New Nightmare

    ★★★

    This movie gets a lot of hype, and I understand why. It’s great to have Heather/Nancy back, as well as Wes Craven, and the meta story line is an original way to tell a NoES tale. But it didn’t really sing for me. I liked it, but not enough to revisit it. 2 hours is a lot to ask for a Freddy film, especially one with relatively few dream killings, killings that veer hard back from the excesses in the…