action, adventure, horror, Maneater series, movie, movie review

June 17th, 2018 Movie – Yeti (a.k.a. Yeti: Curse Of The Snow Demon)


So I got a little bit ahead of myself a few weeks ago when I said that I had reached the end of the Maneater series. To be honest, I forgot all about this movie because I wasn’t too impressed with this particular entry. This is kind of a let down because I do enjoy a good, or in most cases bad, bigfoot movie. The only reason I have this movie is just because I can be a rather annoying completionist at times and wanted to be sure to own all of the movies in the Maneater series. Well, might as well kick off the letter Y with today’s movie, Yeti.

The plot: In the Himalayas in 1972, a Sherpa guides two explorers to a cave in the mountains, where they believe they might find evidence that Yetis really exist. Entering the cave, they encounter a Yeti and the younger explorer runs in fear while the older one attempts to shoot the yeti, only to discover his gun has frozen over due to the cold. Choosing to run himself, the explorer finds himself at a dead end, where the remains of other victims are seen and as he turns to try to run, the yeti catches up to him and kills him. In the present day, a college football team is flying back to the U.S. after visiting Japan and as they fly over the Himilayas, they encounter a storm and end up crashing on one of the mountains. As the survivors (Peyton Elway, Sarah, Ravin, Kyra, Ashley, Dennis, Garcia, Andrew, and Rice) all help each other out of the plane and try to figure out the next move, Peyton finds their coach still alive but badly injured in the plane. Ravin wants to try and hike down the mountain, feeling that there has to be a village nearby but Peyton overrules him, stating that coach can’t move and they can’t leave him. Peyton and Kyra head to the cockpit to check on the pilots and find one of them barely alive. They ask him about an S.O.S. or a spare radio and he tells them that there is one in the tail section of the plane. Heading back to the group, Peyton tells them about the spare radio and Garcia and Andrew volunteer to go looking for it. While they go, Peyton and the others work on moving the bodies out of the plane and trying to find items they can use so they don’t freeze or starve to death, unaware that a yeti is watching them, having been drawn to the crash site by the smell of blood. Meanwhile, Fury and Sheppard, two rescue workers stationed on the mountain, get word on the crash and try to figure out where they should start searching for survivors. Back at the crash site, Peyton and the others find some matches and manage to get a fire built while Sarah found three energy bars, unaware that Ravin had found some chocolate bars and hidden the in the plane. Meanwhile, Andrew and Garcia reach the tail section of the plane and find the radio but Garcia gets no response when he tries to use it. Deciding to try and find shelter, they notice a blood trail and, thinking someone had survived and might need help, they follow it into a nearby cave. After searching for a bit, they find a dismembered leg and try to leave just as a yeti appears behind them. Garcia manages to get away through a crack in the cave but Andrew is stuck and ends up being killed by the yeti. Back at the plane, The survivors make a barrier to try and keep the snow and cold out of the plane and Peyton goes to talk to the coach, who tells him to look after the others before he dies from his injuries. As everyone is going to sleep, Sarah sees the yeti dragging off one of the bodies but when she tries to tell everyone else, they think she might have imagined it. The next day, Sheppard and Fury are dropped off on the mountain and Sheppard tells the helicopter to check the location every day, even if they don’t hear from them, then they head off to look for the plane wreckage. In the cave, Garcia attempts to climb out with the radio strapped to his leg but as he nears the top, he loses his grip on the loose rocks and falls back down to the ground, injuring his leg. At the plane, Sarah is still trying to convince everyone that she saw something and Peyton says that to be safe, they shouldn’t go anywhere on their own. Ravin argues with Peyton over their just sitting there, thinking they should try to leave, but Peyton says that if a rescue comes, they will be coming there first so they should wait. Sarah finds a flare gun and Ravin want to use it to set the fuselage on fire, arguing that it will attract help sooner, but everyone shoots the idea down, as it is the only thing keeping them warm at night and Peyton says they should hold onto the flares for now. As they sit by the fire and argue about the lack of food, Ravin suggests eating some of the dead but Peyton and Sarah shoot that idea down, saying that they will try to catch some of the smaller animals that are probably in the area. Meanwhile, Garcia manages to climb out of the cave and starts heading back to the others but notices that the yeti is following him and stumbles down the mountain trying to get away. Elsewhere, Sheppard and Fury spot the wreckage and fire and estimate it will take them 3 days to get there but the next day, they notice large tracks in the snow heading towards the plane and realize something else is out there with them. Back at the plane, Peyton and Sarah manage to kill a rabbit and after cooking it over the fire, the portion it out to everyone but Ravin still feels like they should cook some of the dead bodies in order to survive and tries to convince Rice the next day to go along with him. When Peyton and Sarah return empty handed trying to capture an animal, Ravin heads out to cut up one of the bodies to cook. When he heads towards Kyra’s brother, she yells at him to stop and Peyton starts fighting with him until Rice separates them. As some of the others argue that it might be the only way to ensure they stay alive, Sarah notices that another body is missing. As the day passes, and they are almost out of matches, Peyton reluctantly agrees to cut up one of the bodies, promising not to touch Kyra’s brother, and tells everyone to stay there, saying they don’t need to see who he cuts up. After returning to the fire with some chunks of meat, Ravin offers up a tray to cook the meat on but Kyra refuses to eat any of it. That night, Kyra chooses to burn the rest of the bodies so they can’t eat any of them and Ravin gets upset but Peyton agrees she probably did the right thing and says that in the morning they will head down off the mountain. As they get some rest in the plane, they hear something moving outside and Ravin grabs the flare gun and shoots at whatever tries to get into the plane only to find out he shot Garcia in the face. Noticing that Garcia had used one of Andrew’s arms to brace his broken leg, they realize Sarah was right and something was out there with them and all head back into the plane. The yeti returns to the site and, finding the bodies all burned, begins attacking the plane, attempting to roll the fuselage off the cliff. Sheppard and Fury see the attack from their camp site and quickly break down their tents so they can head out to help the kids. Peyton leads everyone off the plane before it goes over the edge but Ashley and Dennis end up getting killed by the yeti. Peyton has Kyra fill a glove with some alcohol and he throws it at the yeti, telling Ravin to shoot it but the yeti quickly rolls in the snow to put out the fire, then grabs Sarah and heads off. Peyton wants to go after them but Rice and Ravin stop him, convincing him to wait until morning. In the morning, Peyton and Kyra want to go find Sarah but Rice and Ravin think better of the idea, not wanting to risk their own lifes when she is probably dead. Suddenly, Sheppard and Fury show up and tell them they are their to lead them to an extraction site but when Peyton and Kyra refuse to leave without checking to see if Sarah is still alive, Rice, emboldened by the rescue, agrees to go with them and Sheppard and Fury agree to help, much to Ravin’s displeasure. When the group reach the cave, Peyton comes up with a plan to build a ditch at the entrance to the cave and line it with stakes, then cover it up, hoping the creatures will fall in it. Peyton and Sheppard then head inside the cave and find Sarah in between two sleeping yetis. Sarah quietly slip out from between them but Sheppard’s radio goes off, waking the yetis. They quickly make it out of there and head to the entrance, jumping over the trap and as the yetis exit the cave, Fury shoots at them, knocking them into the ditch and on the spikes. The shots cause an avalanche and they all quickly take shelter from the rushing snow, then the kids all start celebrating the fact that they survived. Heading back to the wreckage, they say their goodbyes to their dead friends then head down towards the extraction point with Sheppard and Fury, unaware that one of the yetis had survived the trap and is digging it’s way out of the snow. The group make camp for the night and continue towards the extraction point in the morning but Ravin asks for a break so he can use the restroom, secretly going to eat one of the chocolate bars he hid. As he is eating the candy, he sees the yeti approaching and runs back to warn the others. As they all run for the extraction point, Ravin splits off from the rest of the group to try and save himself but ends up being attacked by the yeti. Fury attempts to save him but ends up shooting Ravin by accident, then ends up being killed by the yeti. Sheppard goes to get the radio from Fury’s bag, then fires at the yeti, seemingly killing it but the yeti gets back up and attacks him. Sheppard throws the radio to Peyton and tells him to get the others out of there, just before the yeti rips his arm off and beats him to death with it. Peyton, Sarah, Rice, and Kyra find themselves trapped on the cliff as the rescue chopper approaches and as the yeti gets closer, Peyton tackles it off the cliff. Sarah and the others race over and see that Peyton survived the fall by grabbing onto a branch but the yeti had grabbed onto his leg to keep from falling. Sarah and the others try to pull him to safety but when they can’t, they tie a chain to a pole Sarah used as a spear, then she throws it at the yeti, then they tie the other end of the chain to a rock and push it off the cliff, causing the yeti to be yanked free from Peyton and fall to the ground below. They quickly manage to pull Peyton up and he and Sarah kiss as the chopper lands to rescue them. Back at the wreckage, Garcia is shown to still be alive and as he crawls from the wrecked plane, he sees the hand of the other yeti poking out of the snow close by.

Ok, after giving it another chance I guess this isn’t that bad of a movie, but it is still not my favorite movie in the group. The acting was ok, with Carly Pope (Sarah), Peter DeLuise (Sheppard) and Marc Menard (Peyton) doing good jobs in their roles. I honestly had to laugh at Peyton’s name, Peyton Elway, as I thought the idea of naming the lead character , who happens to be the teams quarterback, after two of the top quarterbacks in NFL history was pretty funny. The story was a pretty basic survival story, taking a cue from the Donner party as well as the story of the Uruguayan rugby team that got stuck in the Andes to add some more drama to it instead of making it just a typical monster movie. That aspect of the movie actually got a little more compelling and it really helped make Adam O’Byrne (Ravin) appear even more despicable of a character. The special effects with the yeti were honestly pretty weak and kind of a disappointment. I mean, this is the 14th movie in the series and yet a lot of the scenes with the yeti looked terrible and too fake. I think that was honestly the most disappointing aspect of the movie. It had some good intentions but it didn’t quite live up to expectations, at least not mine.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

horror, movie, movie review, sci-fi, thriller

June 16th, 2018 Movie – Xtinction: Predator X (a.k.a. Alligator X)

xtinction predator x

Wow, when you get to these last couple of letters in the alphabet, they seem to just fly by. So today’s movie is the only movie I own starting with the letter “X” that does not involve the X-men. Obviously, I need to do something to rectify that, and there are a few movies that I have intended to pick up at some point, but for now, this will have to do. Anyways, I first saw this movie on Netflix a couple of years ago and thought it was pretty interesting. I then saw it again, only with a different title. This lead to a bit of confusion when I tried to pick this movie on DVD. Still, I thought it was worth picking up so I found it and that leads us to today’s movie, Xtinction: Predator X.

The plot: In the Louisiana bayou, two deputies pull their boat up to a floating dock and find the severed arm of a man named Lefty. The radio in to Sheriff Tim Richards to tell him what they found and he says that Pappy, along with three other people, have gone missing and they should keep looking. Suddenly, the dock is jostled and as the deputy on the dock tries to see what hit it, he notices his partner is missing. Seeing his hat in the water, he goes to retrieve it only to have something attack him and drag him into the water. Elsewhere, Pappy’s daughter Laura has returned home and is attempting to run Pappy’s swamp tour business only to learn that he is in debt and owes the bank money. When she sees her ex husband Dr. Charles LeBlanc approaching the dock, she grabs a shotgun and tells him to leave, as she feels he is stalking her. Charles tells her that he didn’t even know she was there and had come back to town himself to buy up some of the swamp land for his own research, giving up his teaching career to do so. Charles gets some water samples from near her dock and leaves, running into Tim as he does and they confront each other about Tim’s feelings towards Laura. After Charles leaves, Tim goes to talk to Laura and tells her that there is no sign of Pappy still. They then talk about Charles, and Laura mentions his work in attempting to bring back extinct animals but he was denied the funding for it. Suddenly, Tim gets a call from his brother Henry, who is also a deputy, saying he found something and Tim heads out to see for himself. When he gets there, Henry shows him Lefty’s arm and they wonder what could have ripped his arm off like that. Back on the dock, Froggy, Pappy’s mechanic/employee is working on the tour boat and telling Laura that everything should be ok and Pappy will turn up sooner or later when they are approached by a young man, Tom, asking if he and his girlfriend Mandy can go on a tour. Froggy starts to tell them no but when Tom offers cash, saying he wants to propose to Mandy before he ships out the next day, Laura agrees to take them out, deciding she can look for Pappy at the same time. As they make their way on the tour, Tom asks to go to Pappy’s special spot and Laura tries to head there but she is unfamiliar with the swamp after being gone for several years. Suddenly, the boat is struck by a pliosaurus, which swims off undetected, and they are forced to head to shore so Laura can work on the engine. As she works on the engine, Tom goes ahead and proposes to Mandy and when Laura goes to congratulate them, they notice the shirt that she pulled from the engine is covered in blood. Suddenly, they hear screaming coming from the woods and Laura heads out to investigate. She soon sees Barry and Larry Boudreaux leading a tied up man with a sack covering his face towards the water and after Barry drops a sensor into the water, Larry takes off the sack and pushes the man in. The pliosaurus, attracted by the sensor, kills the man and Laura screams as she recognizes him as Pappy, then runs back to the boat only to find the Boudreaux’s have captured her customers and knock her out. The next day, Henry calls Tim out to the scene of the wrecked police boat and Tim is shocked to see a huge tooth stuck in the wreckage. When Tim gets a call from Froggy saying that Laura never came back last night, he heads over to Pappy’s place but stops when he notices Charles’s car at the local tavern. Heading inside, he questions Charles about where he was last night, and when he last saw Laura, but Charles tells him he hasn’t seen her since she threatened him with a shotgun the day before. Meanwhile, Laura regains consciousness to find herself and Mandy tied up in the Boudreaux’s shack, with Mandy showing signs she was molested. Barry and Larry are testing some water from some containers when they notice Laura is awake and Barry taunts her some before Larry says it is feeding time. The two leave and head out to the swamp with a bound Tom and they use the sensor to summon the pliosaurus but it doesn’t show up so they decide to feed Tom to some nearby alligators instead. Meanwhile, Charles comes across the wrecked boat and speaks with Henry, who shows him the tooth, and Charles tells him it is from a pliosaurus tooth and that the creature appears to be dying based on the condition of the tooth. Elsewhere, Tim and Froggy go out on a boat to try and find Laura, Tom, and Mandy and when they reach “Pappy’s Spot” and find no sign of them, Tim tries contacting Henry only to have his signal cut out. Climbing onto the tree to get a better vantage point of the area, Tim sees a form moving underwater just before it attacks the boat, knocking Froggy into the water, who disappears from view. Back at the Boudreaux’s shack, Laura and Mandy try to come up with a plan to get free when the Boudreaux’s return, saying the police are on their way. Henry shows up, having decided to follow up on something Charles said earlier and Laura shouts out for help and Henry heads inside only to be knocked out by Charles. As Laura questions why he is there and realizes he is working with the Boudreauxs, Charles is upset to learn that they killed Pappy and ends up knocking Laura out when she won’t stop yelling at him. Taking the Boudreauxs outside, Charles talks to them about their killing Pappy but the Boudreauxs tell him that they found that Pappy’s land has the necessary nutrients in the water that the pliosaurus needs, but Pappy wouldn’t sell the land. Charles decides to force Laura to sign, threatening Henry’s life if she doesn’t. Meanwhile, Laura regains consciousness and her and Mandy try to free themselves from their restraints and manage to get Mandy free before Charles and the Boudreauxs return. Charles tells the Boudreauxs to grab Laura and Henry and as the grab her, Laura mouths for Mandy to get help. Laura and Henry are led to the swamp and Charles explains his plan to Laura, then forces her to sign over Pappy’s land. Laura agrees and Charles leaves to go build a nest for the pliosaurus on Pappy’s land, leaving the Boudreauxs to deal with Laura, Henry, and Mandy. Barry goes to grab Laura and throw her into the water when Mandy gets their attention by blowing up the Boudreaux’s cabin. Laura uses the distraction to stab Larry in the eye with the pen and as he stumbles in pain, the pliosaurus lunges forwards and kills him. Laura, Henry, and MAndy run for it but Barry, enraged at his brother’s death, fires a shot from his shotgun and hits Henry in the leg. Laura and Mandy help Henry and they head to Laura’s boat only to see the pliosaurus destroy it so they quickly hide to avoid being spotted by Barry. The next day, Henry dies from blood loss and Laura and Mandy try to find some help but when they spot some fishermen and call out to them, the pliosaurus attacks their boat and kills them. Meanwhile, Charles contacts Barry to find out why the pliosaurus isn’t heading towards the nest he built and learns about Laura and Mandy’s escape. The eventually locate a cabin and go try to see if someone is there to help them only for Mandy to get caught by Barry. Elsewhere, Tim, still stuck in the tree, decides to risk swimming to shore and makes his way towards the Boudreaux’s cabin, only to find Henry’s truck there. Finding no sign of Henry, he gets on the radio to contact the state troopers to get some back up when he hears Laura’s screams and goes looking for her. Laura, hearing Tim call out for her, runs into Froggy only to learn that he was working with Charles and Barry. Froggy contacts Charles, who tells him to bring Laura and Mandy to him and Froggy leads Laura to the cabin, where they get Barry and Mandy but as Laura and Mandy are forced into Froggy’s truck, the Froggy kills Barry under Charles’s orders. As they are driving to meet Charles, Froggy reveals that he is Laura’s half-brother and he is working for Charles due to his resentment at how Papy treated him. Meanwhile, Tim locates Henry’s body then sees Froggy’s truck approaching and moves to shoot him but quickly jumps out of the way, causing Froggy to crash into a nearby shed. Tim helps Laura and Mandy out of the truck and tries to save Froggy but Froggy is impaled by some debris and tells Tim to save himself just before the truck and shack explodes. Realizing they still have to stop Charles, the three head to the marina where they see the nest and Charles’s sensor. Tim goes to shoot the sensor but Charles grabs Mandy and forces him to drop his gun. As the pliosaurus arrives, Charles throws Mandy in the water but Laura and Tim attack him, knocking him in the water, where the pliosaurus kills him while Laura is able to help Mandy to shore. Suddenly, the pliosaurus leaps out of the water and tries to attack them but a bundle of dynamite is tossed into the air, which the pliosaurus swallows, then explodes, killing it. Laura is shocked to see her mother, Lefty, still alive and she explains that after the pliosaurus had bit off her arm, she had gone to get some more dynamite to kill it. As the authorities arrive, Laura approaches Mandy and offers her condolences for what happened and the two hug before she heads off in the ambulance to get checked out. Laura and Tim talk about her staying in town and possibly starting a romance while in the swamp, the pliosaurus’s eggs, which nobody realized it had laid, begin hatching and the baby pliosaurus start swimming around in the water.

This was a pretty decent movie, though I wish some of the CGI was a little better. The acting was decent, with Mark Sheppard (Charles) and Lochlyn Munro (Tim) doing good jobs in their roles but I honestly felt like Elena Lyons was too annoying. I did think Ricky Wayne was great as Barry and wish he had more of a role in the movie than he did. The story was interesting but I think they could have done a better job trying to explain things than do it somewhat piecemeal like they did. I also think the whole Froggy revealing that Pappy was his father was entirely unnecessary and didn’t serve any real purpose. The CGI with the pliosaurus wasn’t as good as I had hoped, even with it being a B movie, as there were several instances where it really just looked out of place in the scenes instead of appearing more naturally. Not something to go out of your way to watch but it is a decent way to kill 90 minutes.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

action, fantasy, horror, Maneater series, movie, movie review

June 6th, 2018 Movie – Wyvern


You know, as I get closer to the end of the alphabet I realize that I will also be getting to the end of several series of movies. Take today’s movie for instance. Not only is it the last movie for the letter “W”, but it is also the last movie in the Maneater franchise. Now I didn’t get a chance to watch this movie on TV when it aired, only watching it when I bought it on DVD with some other movies from the Maneater series. Still, this is one of those movies that I knew I would enjoy so let’s have some fun with today’s movie, Wyvern.

The plot: In Northern Alaska, a melting glacier uncovers a frozen wyvern, which wakes up from it’s frozen slumber and attacks a fisherman, drawn by the smell of his blood when he cuts his hand. In the nearby small town of Beaver Mills, Vinyl Hampton, the local radio DJ, is talking about the upcoming end to the midnight sun, as the town has had almost 24 hours of sunlight for the past 80 days. At the local diner, Jake is working on fixing the steps but keeps having to stop due to his hand being injured. The town doctor, David, walks by and says he is lucky to walk away from the wreck he was in with just the messed up hand and ankle and asks Jake to let him take a look at it but Jake refuses. The diner’s owner, Claire, brings a coffee out for Jake but David grabs it and invites her to go to a conference with him but Claire refuses. When David leaves, Jake comments about David’s persistence and speaks with Claire for a bit before she invites him inside to get some food. Meanwhile, Colonel Travis Sherman is calling out for his dog when a moose head suddenly drops into his hot tub. Meanwhile, Jake finishes working on the diner and heads back to his trailer to find David waiting for him. He reluctantly invites him in to let him look at his hand and after looking at it, David says his wrist is dislocated. Jake then asks the real reason David is there and David comments about how he noticed how Jake looks at Claire, and vice versa, and he doesn’t wan’t Claire hurt when Jake drives out of there after getting his insurance money. David leaves and heads back to town but stops along the way to use the restroom when he is attacked by the wyvern and carried off. Early the next morning, Jake wakes up from a nightmare about his wreck and heads into town, waiting on the diner steps for Claire to arrive and open up and he is soon joined by Chief Dawson. Meanwhile, a local resident named Hass is out hunting when he sees the wyvern and shoots at it when it flies down towards him. Hearing the shots, Dawson goes to check it out, thinking it is just some people letting off steam early, and invites Jake to go with him. They soon find Hass and question what he was doing but Hass is in shock, simply mumbling about a flying monster. As Jake and Dawson put Hass in Dawson’s truck, they notice David’s arm lying in the grass but see no sign of the rest of him. They take Hass back into town, calling Deputy Barnes to call a town meeting at the diner. When Jake, Dawson, and Hass get to town Dawson tells the towns folk about David being missing and badly hurt, not telling them they think he is dead, but when Barnes shows up with the arm, Claire and some of the others get upset. When asked about the festival that day, Dawson says that it can still happen, though Jake says it is a bad idea, then heads out to answer a call he received. Meanwhile, the Colonel spots the wyvern flying over his house and heads to town to try and warn people. He talks to Barnes and his friend Farley but both of them don’t believe him and when he tries to tell Hampton to make an emergency broadcast but she says she can’t without authorization or visual proof of something happening. Meanwhile, Dawson goes to the resident’s house that called the sheriff’s office only to find both of the residents, as well as their caged minks, dead and he ends up knocking himself unconscious. When he comes too, he radios Barnes to shut down the festival on his authority. Back in town, Hampton sees the wyvern land outside the station and attempts to make an emergency broadcast but it knocks out the power to the station. In the town square, Barnes is telling everyone to go home when she is attacked and killed by the wyvern, sending everyone into a panic. In the diner, Jake, Claire, Hass, and Edna hear the commotion just as the wyvern approaches the diner and tries to get inside, forcing them all to take cover. When it leaves, Hampton and Farley head inside the diner and after making sure everyone is ok, they try to figure out what the creature is. Edna thinks it is the beast from Revelations but Hass, coming out of his shock, says it is a wyvern from Norse mythology. Trying to come up with a plan, Jake and Claire decide to go try to find Dawson, telling Hampton and Hass to try and get a hold of the state troopers on the CB. As they are driving to where Dawson was going, they see the wyvern fly overhead and land nearby and Jake decides to head out to see where it is heading. Meanwhile, the Colonel decides to head out to get the authorities on his own but as he drives down the highway, he sees the road blocked with wrecked vehicles and realizes the wyvern is not going to let them leave. Back in town, Dawson arrives and sees the carnage from the festival and is in shock at what happened. Hass and the others see him and yell for him to get in the diner, just as the wyvern returns and ends up grabbing Dawson and flying off with him. Back in the woods, Jake goes as far as he can in his truck, then heads out on foot, leaving Claire in the truck. After he leaves, the wyvern appears and rips off the door to try to get to Claire but she shoots it and manages to escape.  Jake manages to spot the wyvern’s nest but when he hears the shots, he heads back and finds Claire hiding in the trees. The Colonel pulls up and tells them about the highway and says that the wyvern is keeping them there as it’s food supply so they head back to town. When they reach town, they head into the diner and try to think of a new plan. Hampton says that she might be able to jury rig a long range antennae but since hers is trashed, she would need the one from a nearby store to use. Jake and Hampton head out, stopping by Dawson’s truck to get his weapons from the back, and then they head to the store. As they are inside, the wyvern lands on the roof and grabs some of the wires before flying off and after it leaves, Jake goes to get the antennae, managing to get it unscrewed and throwing it to Hampton before the wyvern returns, and they manage to get back to the diner. With the jury rigged antennae, Hampton and Jake tries to reach the state authorities and manage to contact someone but there signal keeps cutting in and out and they aren’t sure if they managed to get their call for help through. Jake, Colonel, Hass, and Farley head out and get some gas from the trucks outside, as well as some other supplies, but the wyvern returns and slashes Farley in the stomach with it’s tail. Back at the nest, David is shown to be alive and after fixing a tourniquet around his severed arm, he looks inside the nest and sees three eggs inside, just before the wyvern returns and grabs him. The wyvern returns to town and drops David on the ground, then lands on the roof of the diner and waits. Jake and the others realize it is using David as bait but Jake can’t just leave David out there. He goes out to save him, with Colonel and Hass covering him. Jake grabs David and starts making his way back and Farley, thinking that he won’t make it, decides to run out to distract the wyvern and ends up being killed. As they all recover and rest, David comes too and tells them about the eggs in the nest before he dies from his wounds. Jake, Hass, Colonel, Hampton, and Claire head out to the nest and, seeing a generator nearby, come up with a plan to electrify the nest in order to kill the wyvern and the eggs. As they head out, Hass ends up being killed by the wyvern but Jake and Hampton get the generator set up and shock the wyvern but it only chases it off. The Colonel shoots two of the eggs but Jake stops him from shooting the third, saying they need it as bait. Heading off with the egg, they come across some  more wrecked and abandoned cars, including a new semi, which happened to be Jake’s replacement truck. Coming up with a new plan, Jake grabs the GPS from David’s car and has the egg strapped into his truck, then drives off, luring the wyvern into following him. As the wyvern starts attacking the truck, Jake steers it towards a cliff and jumps out before it goes over the edge, Pinning the wyvern underneath it as it crashes, then explodes on the rocks below. Jake returns to town to tell everyone it is over and when Hampton asks about the rig, he says he doesn’t need it anymore as he has grown to like it in Beaver Mills, hugging Claire as they all head back inside the diner.

This is one of those no frills, killer animal movies where you know exactly what you are going to get out of it, and enjoy every second of it. This movie was a lot better than I honestly thought it was going to be. The acting was good, with Nick Chinlund and Erin Karpluk doing a good job as Jake and Claire respectively. I also liked Don S. Davis (Colonel) and Barry Corbin (Hass), as they had some great lines throughout the movie. The story was good and I liked that they used a wyvern instead of just calling it a dragon, like most people would probably have done. I also liked that they showcased the creatures intelligence with the scene of it using David as bait to try and lure the others out of the diner. The wyvern’s design was pretty good and I liked the over all special effects in the movie, though there were a few times where they did look a little weak. Still, definitely an enjoyable movie for any sci-fi/horror fan, especially if you are a fan of the Maneater series like me.

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5

horror, movie, movie review

June 5th, 2018 Movie – Wrong Turn

wrong turn

Oh good, another cookie cutter horror movie that everyone wonders why it was made. I will be honest, when I first saw the trailers for this movie, it honestly didn’t have any real originality to it in my opinion. The only thing about it that even remotely piqued my interest was Eliza Dushku being in it, but that honestly wasn’t enough to get me into the theater to see it. I did eventually rent it when it came out on DVD and yes, this ended up being another Blockbuster purchase. Now let’s see if it was worth the purchase as I watch today’s movie, Wrong Turn.

The plot: College students Rich Stoker and Halley Smith are rock climbing in a remote West Virginia forest. Rich reaches the top first and calls out for Halley to hurry up but when she asks Rich to help pull her up, she hears a commotion and Rich’s body appears at the edge of the ledge, with blood dripping down onto Halley. Suddenly, Rich’s body disappears from view before it is tossed off the cliff and somebody starts pulling Halley up the cliff. Halley disconnects her safety line and and attempts to grabs Rich’s line but she ends up falling off the cliff and lands next to Rich’s body. Hearing maniacal laughter as someone makes his way through the brush down the cliff, Halley gets up and starts to head back to their car when she trips on some barbed wire and is dragged back into the forest. A week later, medical student Chris Flynn is driving through the West Virginia mountains on his way to Raleigh for a meeting when he gets stuck in traffic due to a tractor trailer jack-knifing and spilling chemicals onto the highway. Turning around, he attempts to call the company he is meeting to say he will be late when he realizes that he has no signal in the mountains. Making a turn to stop at a gas station, Chris asks the owner to use his phone but finds the pay phone doesn’t work. Seeing a map on the side of of the store, Chris notices an unpaved road called Bear Mountain Road that appears to meet up with the highway after a couple of miles and he decides to take it. As Chris heads down the road, he gets distracted by the sight of a dead deer and ends up crashing into a car that is stopped in the middle of the road. As Chris gets out of his car in a daze, 4 college kids (Carly, Scott, Evan, and Francine) show up, with Francine upset that he wrecked her mom’s car. Chris asks why they were stopped in the middle of the road and Evan tells him they blew out their tires on some barbed wire that was left in the road. A 5th teenager, Jessie, appears and says it wasn’t an accident as she found the barbed wire tied to a tree off the side of the road. Jessie wants to head to the gas station to use their phone but Chris tells them he was just there and it was out of order so she decides to continue on the road till they find some help, telling Chris that he can carry her bag since he hit their car. Scott and Carly decide to go with them but Evan and Francine stay by the cars in case someone drives by. As they make their way down the road, the see a fire off the side of the road and call out to see if anyone is there but when they get no response, they keep moving. Back at the cars, Francine is going through Chris’s car while Evan is looking for some food in their car when he hears something in the woods and goes to check it out. When Francine notices his is missing, she goes looking for him and finds his shoe and a few feet away, his ear and as she backs away in horror, she is killed when someone wraps some barbed wire around her face and neck and chokes her to death with it. Back on the road, the group eventually come to a cabin and call out to see if anyone is there. Getting no response, Chris decides to head inside to see if they have a phone and the others reluctantly follow him. As they look around the cabin, they find evidence that the inhabitants are cannibals and they go to leave only to see a tow truck pulling up, with their cars in tow and they are forced to hide in the cabin. The disfigured cannibals (Three Finger, Saw Tooth, and One Eye) enter the cabin, dragging Francine’s body with them, and proceed to dismember and eat part of her, while the horrified teens watch. When the cannibals go to sleep, Chris and the others attempt to sneak out of the cabin, with Chris holding the spring for the screen door so it doesn’t make any noise but as they leave, Saw Tooth wakes up and spots Chris and he quickly yells for them to run. They head up the cliff and reach a clearing that is full of the cars from the cannibal’s victims and quickly hide when they see the cannibals coming in their truck. As the cannibals get out to start looking for them, Chris comes up with the plan to steal their truck, then runs out to distract the cannibals but One Eye shoots him in the leg. Scott then runs off in the other direction, leading the cannibals away. Jessie and Carly go help Scott and they get in the truck, finding Evan’s body stored inside, and drive off, with Three Finger coming back to chase after them. They drive down the road looking for Scott and eventually see him but as they call out for him to get in the truck, Scott is shot repeatedly in the back with Saw Tooth’s arrows and killed. Chris, Jessie, and Carly continue driving down the road but find it blocked by a fallen tree and are forced to continue walking through the woods. They eventually find an old watchtower and climb up it to see if there is anything there they can use. They find some old medical supplies that Jessie and Chris use to tend to his leg, and a radio which they use to try and call for help but get no response. Chris sees the cannibals searching for them with torches and has them duck down and cover up the lights they found. The cannibals start to pass them by but the radio suddenly crackles as some responds to their call for help, alerting the cannibals to where they are. Three Finger starts climbing up the ladder and Chris and Jessie work on barricading the entrance while Carly tries to tell the people on the other end what is going on. Unable to get into the tower, the cannibals set the tower on fire to try and force the kids out. Carly breaks a window, saying she would rather jump than be killed in a fire and Chris says they should jump, saying the branches of the nearby tree can hold them. They all jump and land in the tree and when they see an arrow hit a branch near them, they decide to walk along the branches to get away. Three Finger climbs up the tree and decapitates Carly before she can start walking, much to Jessie’s horror. Chris and Jessie keep moving for a little bit, then Chris decides to set a trap for Three Finger. As Jessie yells out for him and lures him towards her, Chris, on another branch, is holding a third branch back and once Three Finger is in position, he lets go and the branch knocks Three Finger out of the tree. As One Eye and Saw Tooth go to check on their brother, Chris and Jessie manage to escape. Taking shelter in a cave behind a waterfall, Chris tells Jessie he is sorry about her friends and she explains that her boyfriend had just broken up with her and so Carl and the others decided to take her camping to get away from everything, and Chris tries to tell her it is not her fault as she feels guilty for their deaths. The next day, Chris and Jessie see the main road and start to head down the cliff towards it when they are attacked by One Eye and Saw Tooth, knocking Chris down the cliff while grabbing Jessie and taking her away. Seeing a police SUV coming, Chris rushes out onto the road to stop it and try to get him to help save Jessie but Saw Tooth shoots the cop in the eye with an arrow. Chris tries to drive off in the police SUV but find the keys are missing so he is forced to hide. Saw Tooth approaches the car but doesn’t see any sign of Chris so he puts the cop’s body in the SUV and drives off, with Chris quickly hitching a ride underneath. Back at their cabin, Jessie is tied up on one of the beds and One Eye is about to start cutting her when he is distracted by Saw Tooth arriving with the cop. As the cannibals begin hacking up the cop then approach Jessie to kill her, a fire suddenly erupts in the doorway. One Eye goes to investigate and is run over by Chris in the police SUV. Chris then attacks and stabs Saw Tooth, seemingly killing him but when he starts to free Jessie, Saw Tooth rises up and attacks him. As Saw Tooth starts to over power him, Jessie manages to finish freeing herself and shoots him in the back of the head with an arrow. Three Finger, who had survived the fall out of the tree, suddenly appears and starts attacking them but Chris chokes him with barbed wire and Jessie grabs an axe and hits him in the shoulder/chest with it. As they back out of the cabin, they see all three cannibals are still alive and attempting to still get them so Chris shoots the gas cans on the back of the police SUV, causing an explosion that destroys the cabin and kills the cannibals. Chris and Jessie drive off in the cannibals tow truck, stopping at the gas station briefly, where Chris rips the map off the wall, before heading back onto the highway. Sometime later, a deputy arrives at the cabin and begins searching the ruins when Three Finger, who survived the explosion, appears behind him and kills him with an axe.

Wrong Turn met with mixed to negative reviews from the critics, holding a 41% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “An unremarkable slasher flick that fails to distinguished itself from others of its ilk.” Several of the cast and crew ended up getting poison ivy during filming as their chairs were mistakenly placed in what was thought to be some weeds but turned out to be a large patch of the rash inducing plants. Kevin Zegers and Lindy Booth, who played Evan and Francine, would also go on to play another couple in another horror movie, 2004’s Dawn Of The Dead.  The movie was a success at the box office, earning $28.7 million off of a $12.6 million budget and would spawn 5 follow up films, 2 sequels and 3 prequels.

This was a decent horror movie but honestly it was pretty predictable. The acting was ok, with Eliza Dushku (Jessie), Desmond Harrington (Chris) and Emmanuelle Chriqui (Carly) did pretty decent jobs in their roles. The story was honestly not incredibly original, as the whole disfigured/mutated group of people/cannibals attacking a group of people has been done time and time again. It didn’t matter that both Chris and Jessie survived, as everyone could have died and it wouldn’t have made this feel different from any other slasher movie. The effects were pretty good and I did think that they did a decent job in downplaying some unnecessary gore that they could have thrown in to make it bloodier. It’s a decent movie but not something that is worth going out of your way to watch.

Rating: 3 out of 5

action, adventure, horror, movie, movie review

June 4th, 2018 Movie – World War Z

world war z

If there is one thing that the turn of the century can be noted for, it is the resurgence of the zombies (Hah, didn’t even think of the pun there). Zombie movies were making a rather large come back, but so were zombies in books and comic books. One of the biggest books to come out around the mid-2000’s was Max Brooks’ “World War Z”. I remember seeing hundreds of people reading or talking about this book when it was out. Several years later, news came out that they were going to make a movie based on the book. Now, that sounded interesting to me but there was one thing I found a little odd, the movie was going to be PG-13. Now that was going to be interesting as a PG-13 zombie movie was something that is pretty rare, if not entirely unheard of. Well, let’s see how it turned out with today’s movie, World War Z.

The plot: In Philadelphia, former UN worker Gerry Lane, his wife Karin, and two daughters Rachel and Constance (Conny), are stuck in traffic when a speeding motorcycle cop smashes the driver side window of their car. As Gerry gets out to try and see what is going on, an explosion occurs in the distance. Gerry gets back in his car just as another cop tells him to stay inside his car, right before he gets run over by an out of control garbage truck. Seeing a path out of there, Gerry follows behind the truck and tries to get out of the city but ends up being struck by an ambulance. Gerry and his family get out of the car, as they see more people running, and they head for an abandoned RV, as Gerry witnesses people, seemingly mad, begin attacking other people. As he looks back, he sees on person get bit and 12 seconds later, become one of the infected and start attacking other people. They get in the RV and drive out of the city and after a while, stop to tend to Rachel, who is suffering from an asthma attack. Realizing that they don’t have her inhaler with them, Gerry tries to get her to breathing calmed down when he receives a call from his former boss, UN Deputy Secretary General Thierry Umutoni. Theirry says he needs Gerry on this and makes plans to pick them up and will call back in an hour. Continuing on the road, Gerry and his family stop at a supermarket to get some supplies and medicine for Rachel. Gerry manages to get the medicine when he hears Conny screaming and when he checks on her, discovers two men attempting to rape Karin. Gerry yells out at them and one of the men tries to shoot him, forcing Gerry to use the rifle they found in the RV to kill him. After making sure Karin is all right, they head outside to find the RV is gone so they head to some nearby apartments, letting Thierry know where they will be, who says he will have a helicopter pick them up at day rise. As they get close to the apartments, more infected people begin chasing them and they quickly try to barricade the door and make their way towards the roof but are forced to take shelter with a couple and their son Tommy for the night. The next day, Gerry tries to convince the family to leave with them but they refuse so Gerry, making a makeshift gauntlet and taping a knife to the end of the rifle, leads his family towards the roof. When they come under attack by infected people, Gerry fends them off while Karin takes the girls to the roof and lights some flares to signal the helicopter. Gerry kills several people but as he spears the last one, it falls on top of him and tries to bite him but he is saved by Tommy, whose parents were attacked but he managed to escape. Gerry grabs Tommy and leads him to the roof but when he gets there, he avoids his family at first and heads to the edge of the roof, counting to 12 to make sure he wasn’t infected. The helicopter arrives and takes the Lanes and Tommy to an aircraft carrier that is serving as a makeshift base of operations, where Thierry is waiting for them. After getting his family and Tommy settled, Gerry speaks with Thierry, who tells him that the President is dead and several members of the Joint Chiefs. Major cities were struck the hardest by the virus, as airports proved to be the perfect way for the virus to travel. Reaching the control room, he points out Dr. Fassbach, who is telling a group of scientists and doctors that they need to find a point of origin for the zombie virus if they hope to find a cure. The UN military commander wants Gerry to go with Fassbach to help him with his investigation and keep him safe and Gerry refuses at first but the commander tells him that he has no room for non essential personnel and will have him and his family taken off the ship if he doesn’t help them. Gerry breaks the news to Karin and then says goodbye to his daughters, asking Tommy to help look after them. Gerry, Fassbach, and a team of SEALS fly to Camp Humphries in South Korea but as soon as they land, they are attacked by some zombies on the airstrip. Fassbach heads back to the plane but slips on the loading ramp and ends up shooting himself in the head. The base’s surviving personnel rescue Gerry and the rest of his team and bring them back to the base. Inside, Gerry asks about the memo, which was the first time the word zombie was mentioned, and the base commander, Captain Speke, tells him it was an email, not a memo. He takes him to a room where all of the bodies are ash and explains that the base doctor was the first patient on the base to be infected. He had gone to tend to the body of a soldier who went AWOL in a nearby village and the villagers asked him to tend to a sick boy, who was infected and tied to a bed in a barn. The boy bit the doctor and when he came back to base, he began biting his patients, except for one man who had a lame leg. Speke tells him that head shots seem to be the only way to kill them but they incinerated the bodies just to be sure. As they continue talking, Gerry’s attention turns to a cell where an ex CIA agent is being held, having been arrested for selling weapons to North Korea. The agent tells Gerry that the North Koreans will survive this because they pulled the teeth out of all of their citizens, making it impossible for the zombie virus to spread to them. He then mentions that Isreal had known something was coming, as they had walled off their cities a week before the first reports of the zombies had occurred. Deciding to fly to Jerusalem, Gerry and the soldiers make a stealth run to refuel the plane and leave, but as they make their way their, Karin tries calling Gerry on his sat phone, rousing the zombies. Speke, driving the refueling truck, clears a path for Gerry and the pilots and they reach the plane but Speke ends up being bit in the leg and the co pilot is forced to stay behind and detach the fuel lines, leaving Gerry and the pilot as the only one’s left. As they head to Jerusalem, Gerry calls Karin and tells her where they are going but they see a nuclear explosion occur, and the EMP from the explosion shorts out his phone. Arriving in Jerusalem, Gerry tells the pilot to stay on the plane and get it ready for a quick take off, then heads into the city. Gerry meets with Mossad Chief Jurgen Warmbrunn, who explains that they had intercepted an Indian military message claiming that they were fighting “dead spirits”. He then says that Israel had developed a policy over the years of a “10th Man”, where if 9 people had the same facts and came to the same conclusion, then the job of the 10th man was to assume that they were all wrong; and when it came to that message, he was the 10th man. Jurgen shows Gerry the walls and he asks him where he should go in India to start looking but Jurgen says that is a wast of time. As some of the people begin singing in celebration, a young girl grabs a microphone to sing louder. This causes the zombies outside the wall to start swarming towards the walls and begin climbing over each other, forming a zombie ladder to reach the top. Gerry realizes what is happening and shouts a warning to Jurgen that is too late as the zombies reach the top of the wall and begin pouring over it. Jurgen has some of his soldiers escort Gerry back to the airport so he can leave but they get attacked by zombies. Trying to reach a secondary extraction point, Gerry notices that the zombies ignore an old man and an emaciated boy while attacking other people nearby. One of the soldiers, Segen, is bitten in the hand and Gerry cuts it off, then starts counting as he works on binding her injury and realizes he had cut it off in time to save her life. The helicopter arrives but is ovverrun by zombies and they make it to the airport just as Gerry’s plane takes off. Seeing a commercial airliner about to leave, Gerry and the soldiers hold it up long enough for Gerry and Segen to get on board. As Gerry works on changing the bandages on Segen’s hand, he thinks back to what he witnessed and realizes he might have an answer to the problem. Using his phone, he calls Karin and tells her to get Theirry, then asks him to find the nearest medical facility that was working on diseases and vaccines. Gerry then heads to the cockpit and hands the phone to the copilot and after a few minutes, he returns and says they are heading to Cardiff, Wales, where a W.H.O. facility is but they don’t know if it is still operational. As they get close to Cardiff, a zombie that had managed to get on board attacks a stewardess and some other passengers in the back of the plane. Gerry and some of the passengers try to barricade the front cabins but when that fails, Gerry grabs one of Segen’s grenades and uses it to blow a hole in the side of the plane. The zombies start getting sucked out the hole but strike the engine, causing the plane to crash. Gerry comes too and finds that he has been impaled by a piece of debris but is otherwise still alive, as is Segen, and they make their way to the W.H.O. facility. On the aircraft carrier, they receive word that the plane went down and hearing no communication from Gerry and believing him dead, Thierry is reluctantly forced to send Karin, Rachel, Conny, and Tommy to a safe zone in Nova Scotia. Back in Cardiff, Gerry comes too and finds himself strapped to a table with two doctors asking him questions. When they ask about the phone Gerry had, Gerry tells them to call the number in it and Thierry answers. Thierry tells the doctors who he is and apologizes to Gerry when he asks about Karin, saying that he had no choice as they thought he was dead. After being reunited with Segen, Gerry asks them where they keep the lethal viruses, but ones that are curable, and the doctors think that he wants to infect the zombies and tell him that dead people can’t get sick. Gerry says it is not for the zombies, but for them and explains that he wants to use it as a camouflage to hide from the zombies. The doctors feel like that might work but tell him all of the deadly viruses are stored in B-wing, which is currently overrun by zombies. Gerry, Segen, and the head doctor make some make shift armor and carefully make their way towards the vault but when they accidentally alert the zombies to their presence, Gerry leads them away so that Segen and the doctor can get to the vault. Segen and the doctor reach the vault but are unable to get through the zombies and are forced to make their way back to the other side of the facility, with the zombies chasing after them. Meanwhile, Gerry reaches the vault, finding it clear of zombies now, and makes his way inside, having one of the doctors call to tell him the code, and he starts to grab all of the viruses inside but when he goes to leave, he finds a zombie outside the door waiting for him. Finding himself trapped with no way to contact the others, Gerry writes a note and holds it up to the camera, asking them to tell his family that he loves them, then injects himself with one of the viruses and sits down to wait. The doctors watch as well, and worry for Gerry’s health as some of the viruses that he grabbed had no cure so he could be dead either way. After waiting for a while for the virus to fully infect him, Gerry opens the door and stands still as the zombie enters the room but moves right past him. Sealing it inside, Gerry makes his way back to the others, causing a distraction that lures all of the zombies away from the door and he smiles as he is able to walk right past them to make it to the others. Inside, the doctor treats him for the disease and then he and Segen leave the facility to meet up with Thierry and tell him the good news. As Gerry is taken to Nova Scotia to be reunited with his family, it is shown how the W.H.O. manufactures more of the “viral camouflage” to pass out to survivors and counter offensives are starting to start killing off the zombies, as Gerry says that this isn’t the end, as the war has just begun.

World War Z met with modest review from the critics, holding a 66% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “It’s uneven and diverges from the source book, but World War Z still brings smart, fast-moving thrills and a solid performance from Brad Pitt to the zombie genre.” Actor Peter Capaldi was credited as W.H.O. Doctor in the film. This is due to the film makers having insider knowledge of the fact that Capaldi would be portraying the next Doctor Who, which was announced by the BBC 2 months after the movie’s release. The movie was a success at the box office, earning $540 million off of a $190 million budget and a sequel had been planned, with Brad Pitt returning in his role and David Fincher slated to direct. The filming was supposed to start in 2018 but has been delayed as Fincher focuses on his TV series Mindhunter.

I have to admit, this was a pretty good movie, The acting was good, with Brad Pitt doing a good job in the lead role of Gerry. While the other actors were decent in supporting roles, as Gerry was honestly the main focus, I do think they could have done a better job with some of the people instead of just having them be there. The story was interesting, veering away from the source material somewhat while ramping up the drama, which really helped carry the movie along and keep people invested in it. The one aspect of the story that did irritate me was the idea of the “smart virus”. I felt like the idea of the virus “sensing” less than perfect hosts and avoiding certain people was honestly giving it too much intelligence. A virus is simply going to infect anyone it can, unless the body has the necessary anti bodies to prevent it, and zombies no longer have higher brain functions, simply functioning on instinct, and will attack any living body, regardless on if they are sick or not, as the only thing they notice is if the body is alive or dead. The special effects were pretty good but the main thing this movie had going for it was drama, and I felt like that was extremely well done. So it is possible to make a rather gore free zombie movie and, my issue aside, this is a good movie and one worth watching.

Rating: 4 out of 5

horror, movie, movie review

June 1st, 2018 Movie – The Witch’s Mountain

the witchs mountain

The start of the month and the last time I will watch a movie from the Chilling Classics box set. I have to be honest, I am not all that sad to be done with it. There were some gems hidden in there but overall, it was kind of a disappointment. Well, let’s see if this collection goes out with a bang or a whimper with today’s movie. Now this movie is one of a slew of Spanish horror movies that were dubbed and sent over to the U.S. for release in the 70’s. I honestly have never seen this movie before so I really am curious as to what I am getting with today’s movie, The Witch’s Mountain.

The plot: A woman named Carla returns to her home and asks her groundskeeper if there were any calls before asking that he take her car to get the brakes checked. When she enters the house, she is shocked to see a doll lying on the floor of her study and goes looking for her daughter. As she searches, she finds her cat has been killed and left lying in her bed and finds a message written on her mirror. She then sees her daughter, who blames her cat for what happened and scaring her pet into hiding. As Carla tries talking with her daughter, she searches all over the house for her pet, eventually finding it in the garage. As her daughter goes to collect her pet, which happens to be a boa, Carla quietly pours gasoline on the floor and lights it, burning both her daughter and her boa. Later, Carla goes to see her boyfriend Mario, who is not happy to see her waiting for him in his apartment. Carla tries to convince Mario to go on a vacation with her, saying she talked to his editor already but Mario calls his editor and tells him he wants any assignment available, upsetting Carla and she leaves. Mario ends up heading to the Pyrenees Mountains and as he is taking pictures of the scenery, he sees a woman named Delia sunbathing on a nearby beach and takes a few pictures of her. He then introduces himself and when he learns that she is a writer, he asks her to accompany him on his assignment and she agrees, having him take her back to her house so she can grab some things. As he waits for her, he hears a strange song that gradually gets louder and he asks Delia about it but she didn’t hear anything. The two drive along and eventually stop at a hotel, getting separate rooms for the evening. As Delia is getting ready for bed, she sees a hooded figure watching her from the window and screams out just as the lights go out. The hotel manager shows up with a candle and Mario comes out of his room to comfort her. When he questions the manager about someone staring in her window, the manager tells them that the back of the hotel is against the mountain, making it easy to look through the window. Mario and Delia decide to sleep in the bar but when Mario wakes up, he finds Delia missing. He searches the grounds for her but finds no sign of her and when he talks with the hotel manager, who suggests she possibly went for a walk. Meanwhile Delia wakes up in the middle of a field with no knowledge of how she got there. Mario, who had driven off to try to find her, sees her and drives down to get her and she can’t explain what happened or how she wound up there. Returning to the hotel so she can change, the manager asks if they will be travelling far and when Mario says they are heading to the nearby lake, he expresses some concern for Delia going there and recommends against it. As they head out, Mario tells Delia of the manager’s warning and asks if he should take her home but Delia laughs off the warning. They reach the lake and Mario starts taking some pictures of the area and when Delia points out an approaching shepherd and his flock, Mario goes to take a picture of them but the shepherd quickly walks away, almost as if he is frightened of him. Driving along, Mario decides to stop and climb a hill for some shots and Delia joins him but as they are on the hill, someone steals there jeep and drives off. The two briefly argue over who’s fault it is, then head off to try and find it, eventually locating it outside of a seemingly abandoned village. Seeing smoke coming from one of the houses, the knock on the door and ask the old woman who drove the jeep there but the woman says she hasn’t seen anyone there. The old woman invites them to stay the night and Mario and Delia both agree and after he brings in their luggage, Mario decides to use the remaining light to take pictures of the village. The woman warns him not to stray too far and to come back to the house when the fog rolls in but Mario tells her he is an experienced mountaineer and not to worry. As it starts to get dark, Delia starts getting worried about Mario but the old woman tries to calm her down, giving her a drink to make her sleep. Meanwhile, Mario ends up lost in the fog when he hears that strange song again and sees a strange procession of women in black carrying torches and he starts to follow them when he suddenly falls asleep. In the morning, Mario returns to the house and tells Delia what happened to him. He decides to examine his film and when he notices something strange in it, he quickly develops it so he can blow up the images. When he shows them to Delia, it reveals people in all of the frames of the village but he claims that there was nobody there when he took the pictures. Suddenly, they hear someone calling out for the old woman and see some of the women from his pictures approaching the house saying that there was a serious injury. The old woman leaves with the group and Mario and Delia decide to follow them and see where they are going. Seeing them enter a building, Delia wants to leave but Mario decides he wants to stay and investigate a little more before they leave. Delia kisses Mario and he heads off to explore, finding a rock covered in blood before entering a catacomb, where he finds a wild man chained to a wall. Meanwhile, Delia is waiting in the jeep when she suddenly gets out and walks to a nearby house, where she lies down on the floor and a hooded figure approaches her. Mario heads back to the old woman’s house and in another room, finds a black cat locked in a cabinet and finds other items, such as pictures of various women, including Delia and Carla. Mario is suddenly grabbed by a strange woman and when he pulls her off of him and asks where the old woman is, he sees the woman can’t answer as her tongue has been cut out. Mario rushes back to the jeep to find Delia there and he quickly drives out of there. As they head along the road away from the village, it starts getting dark and they are forced to stop on the side of the road as the fog makes it to dangerous to drive. Mario sets up a tent and they head inside but as they are about to kiss, they are suddenly captured by a group of women. The women, who are part of a coven of witches, take Mario and Delia into the woods, where the begin to perform a ceremony. Delia is mesmerized and dressed in a bridal gown and led away to the catacombs by the old woman. After they disappear from view, the women all turn to face Mario and the hooded figure removes her hood to reveal it is Carla, just as the women all attack Mario. Delia comes too in the catacombs and kills the wild man in chains, then runs out of the catacombs in a daze. Mario regains consciousness and sees Delia running and calls out to her, then follows after her but is unable to stop her as she runs off a cliff and falls to her death. Mario returns to his jeep and heads back to the village, burning all of the buildings down and returns home only to find the witches waiting for him there.

This was an interesting movie and, while having it’s faults, wasn’t that bad of a movie. The acting was ok, with Patty Shepard (Delia) and Cihangir Gaffari (Mario) did a good job in their roles. I also liked Monica Randall (Carla) though honestly found her role to be a little confusing. The basic plot of the movie never really did seem to be explained, as it seemed to be just kind of thrown together as the movie progressed. The pacing, while somewhat slow and steady, would also seem to go off on tangents for not reason, cutting away from one scene to another one, then back again with no real explanation as to why. There wasn’t any real special effects to this movie, relying mostly on suspense to help carry it. The camera work could have been better, as it seemed to jump around a lot at times which made it harder to follow what was happening. Not a bad movie but not something to go out of your way to watch.

Rating: 2 out of 5

horror, movie, movie review

May 23rd, 2018 Movie – The Werewolf Vs. The Vampire Women

the werewolf vs the vampire women

Of course, you can’t have a slew of werewolf movies without him fighting another movie monster. Even back in the day, you had Frankenstein Meets The Wolf Man, and a slew of movies have followed ever since. Today’s movie is one of the multiple werewolf movies that Paul Naschy did back in the 60’s-70’s but for some reason, when I saw the title I thought of an episode of the old Ghostbuster’s cartoon. In that cartoon, the Ghostbusters find themselves in an out of the way town in the woods that has a vampire problem, only to find that the town’s original residents were werewolves, and since their weapons have no effect on them, they Ghostbusters basically just trap both groups of monsters in the town. Now, I know that today’s movie will be nothing like that so let’s see what exactly it does entail as I watch The Werewolf Vs. The Vampire Women.

The plot: Dr. Hartwig and his companion head into a cemetery late at night to examine the body of Waldemar Daninsky, a recently killed man suspected of being a werewolf. As the two men argue over whether werewolfs actually exist, Hartwig decides to remove the two silver bullets from Daninsky’s body, saying that if he really is a werewolf, he will come back to life. After the bullets are removed and nothing happens, Hartwig taunts his companion but as they smoke a cigarette, Daninsky comes back to life and kills them, then kills a young woman in the woods as he leaves the cemetery. Some time later, Elvira is talking to a friend of hers, Inspector Marcel, about her trip through Europe to try and find the grave of a murderess and suspected vampire, Countess Wandesa Darvula de Nadasdy, for her graduation project. The next day, Elvira and her friend Genevieve head out and eventually come to the ruins of a castle. As Elvira explores the castle, she runs into Daninsky, who invites her and Genevieve to stay at his house when their car runs out of gas. As they talk during dinner, Elvira explains why they are there and Daninsky gets a strange look on his face when she mentions they are looking for Nadasdy’s tomb. As they go to sleep, Elvira is unnerved by the situation, saying something wasn’t right about Daninsky, but Genevieve thinks it is simply her nerves and says they should enjoy the hospitality. That night, as Elvira lies awake in bed, a strange woman enters the room and begins to attack her. When she regains consciousness, Elvira finds Daninsky sitting on the side of her bed and he apologizes for what happened and says he will explain everything to her. As they sit outside, Daninsky explains that the woman is his sister Elizabeth, whom he takes care of as she suffered an accident some time ago. While they are talking, Genevieve is exploring the grounds and finds a shack filled with bloody chains and blood on the walls and floor when Elizabeth appears and attacks Genevieve, rendering her unconscious. Daninsky and Elvira hear the commotion and take Genevieve back to the house, where Elvira tends to Genevieve’s wounds and tries to explain things to her. Meanwhile, Daninsky chastises Elizabeth and tells her not to scare them off, as they might be his last chance. Later, Daninsky, Elvira, and Genevieve go over the old maps and legends and figure out where Nadasdy’s tomb might be so they head out. The eventually find it near the ruins of a monastary and open the tomb to find a coffin inside. Elvira leaves, not wanting to see what is inside, and Daninsky opens it to find a skeleton inside. Genevieve takes some pictures and examines the skeleton but cuts her hand, getting blood onto the skeleton before Daninsky is able to tend to her wound. Meanwhile, Elvira is heading back to the car when she encounters a decayed figure in a robe. As she runs from the figure, it suddenly disintegrates just as Daninsky appears, and he tells her they should leave. That night, as they are getting ready for bed, Genevieve finds herself drawn outside, where she is met by the revived Nadasdy. Nadasdy sucks some more of Genevieve’s blood, then embraces Genevieve and leads her away, as Elizabeth watches this all happen. Inside the house, Elvira goes looking for Genevieve and discovers Elizabeth’s body on the stairs, then sees Genevieve approaching her, having been turned into a vampire by Nadasdy, but Genevieve quickly flees when Daninsky appears, holding a crucifix. The next day, Daninsky says he will take care of Elizabeth’s body and tells Elvira that she must leave here but Elvira refuses, saying that she loves him and wants to stay by his side so he says that she should head into the village to get some gas for her car. Daninsky heads out and buries Elizabeth, hammering a stake through her heart and chopping off her head before he does so. Meanwhile, Elvira has gone to get the gas and was given a ride back to the house when they encounter Genevieve and Nadasdy, who walk by Elvira and Pierre and disappear into the woods, as Elvira is holding the crucifix Daninsky gave her to keep them at bay. That night, Daninsky transforms into a werewolf and smashes his way out of the house and starts roaming the woods. Meanwhile, Elvira has a dream where Genevieve and Nadasdy stab her throat and drink her blood, leaving her for dead but she wakes and clutches the crucifix to her chest. The next morning, Daninsky returns to the house and is met by Elvira, and he tells her the truth about his condition and she promises to help him through it. That night, Genevieve attacks Elvira and drinks her blood but as she leaves, she encounters Daninsky and they struggle before he shoves her and she falls onto a cross, impaling herself in the chest. Daninsky checks on her the next day and they make plans to leave the area but Daninsky says that they should wait till after the full moon passes. Daninsky has Elvira chain him in the shack, warning her to keep the crucifix with her as Nadasdy might come back for her but as she wanders the house, she is grabbed by Pierre, who intends to kidnap and rape her. Daninsky transforms and breaks free of his chains and encounters Pierre carrying Elvira and quickly kills him. The next day, Marcel arrives in town and after learning where Elvira is staying, goes to see her but she rebuffs his advances, as she is in love with Daninsky. Daninsky speaks with Marcel, who is worried for Elvira’s safety with all the strange events going on, and Daninsky agrees that it might be best if Elvira leave. Daninsky convinces Elvira to leave with Marcel but as they leave town, they are captured by Nadasdy, who chains them to the walls of her new tomb. The next night, Nadasdy prepares to kill Elvira to summon Satan but Daninsky, who had been hunting her new lair, finds them. Placing a crucifix over the entrance way so that Nadasdy can’t escape, Daninsky works on freeing Elvira but after she is free, Daninsky transforms into a werewolf. Daninsky then begins fighting with Nadasdy, eventually killing her. He then approaches Elvira, who stabs him with the silver crucifix, killing him and ending his suffering, as only someone that loves him could truly kill him. As Daninsky’s body transforms back to human, Elvira works on freeing Marcel and they leave the tomb together.

This is a pretty decent movie story-wise but the camera work didn’t really help it. The acting was good, with Paul Naschy doing a good job reprising the role of Waldemar Daninsky, while Gaby Fuchs, Barbara Capell, and Patty Shepard did good jobs as Elvira, Genevieve, and Nadasdy respectively. The story was pretty interesting, continuing where the previous werewolf movie that Naschy made left off. I liked the concept of how Nadasdy was brought back but felt there were some ways that they could have done a better job with it. The pacing also felt odd, as there were cut aways that just seemed to break up any tension that was building, as well as random events that just seemed thrown in for no real reason, like Pierre trying to steal and kidnap Elvira. I don’t know if it is the copy in this box set or the actual movie but a lot of the camera work and editing was just terrible. There was one point where Elvira’s face was blue, and like I said, I don’t know if it is the copy, or the original shotty editing that is the cause. A lot of potential but definitely something that could have been better made.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5