action, horror, Maneater series, movie, movie review, sci-fi

Flashback Review: May 6th, 2014 Movie – Black Swarm

black swarm

Why if it isn’t my old friend, the Maneater series of movies. It’s been a while since I have watched one of you guys, a little over a month in fact. Anyways, I know I am falling behind on getting these blog posts out. To start with, I moved recently so my schedule at work changed this past week. On top of that, I have a pair of hyper active kids whose favorite past time is to come into their uncle’s room and make him spend time playing with them, so that kind of pushes me back even more. Well, that is not the worst thing to have happen and it isn’t as bad as it sounds to be honest. Now, let’s get to watching some movies and enjoy Black Swarm once again.

The plot: In Black Stone, New York, local exterminator Dan Hall is called out to deal with a wasp nest and, noting the weird wasps coming out of the nest, he moves his blowtorch up to ignite the nest only for it to explode in a freak accident, killing him. Some time later, Jane Kozik is moving with her 9 year old daughter Kelsey back to Black Stone from Manhatten, though Kelsey is not to thrilled at the prospect and wonders asks her mom why she had moved away if it is such a good place to live. In Black Stone, Devin Hall, Dan’s brother, is checking out the basement of Beverly Rowe, a blind woman that used to babysit the neighborhood kids such as him when he was young. As he finishes up, she comments about Jane moving back to town and how funny it is that she is moving back just as he is leaving. Devin heads to his shop at the center of town and is approached by Mayor Blatz, who is desperately trying to convince Devin to stay, but Devin says that the town is dying because all of the work has left and he has nothing keeping him in town. As they continue arguing, they don’t notice a strange man with welts on his head walking around, emitting a strange buzzing sound. When Jane and Kelsey get to town, Jane goes to get the keys to their house, leaving Kelsey to wander around the town. Kelsey runs into a man blowing a whistle, though she doesn’t hear anything, and as she questions the man, he tells her that his name is Eli and offers her a peach if she can keep it a secret that she saw him. When Kelsey’s attentions is distracted by an ice cream truck, Eli disappears and Kelsey asks her mom for some money to get some ice cream but the driver, who is making a strange buzzing sound and acting erratically, drops the ice cream he hands her, then drives off. Later that night, a busker sneaks into Beverly’s basement to sleep for the night but as he lays down, he hears some buzzing coming from a hole in the wall and as he peers inside, a swarm of wasps bursts out, slamming him into a wall before swarming all over him while the queen flies into his mouth. The next day, Jane arrives on the scene at Beverly’s house and is shocked to see what happened to the busker, asking the doctor to let her know what he finds out. Jane then heads inside to see Beverly, who tells her about Devin leaving town and admonishes Jane for not letting Kelsey meet her uncle but Jane says it would be difficult to see Devin since she would just be reminded of his brother, who was her husband when he died. At the town morgue, Devin is called in by the doctor and finds a woman, Katherine Randall, examining the body instead. Katherine explains that she is an entomologist that was called in for a consult and shows him an ovipositor that she had found in the victim’s body. Devin asks of it could have been anaphylactic shock that killed him but she says she didn’t see signs of asphyxiation, and is puzzled by the death. After they leave, the coroner enters the morgue only to find the body has disappeared and when he tries looking for it, he is suddenly grabbed by the busker’s body, which has somehow reanimated, and killed, before the busker walks off. Devin is leaving town when something slams into his windshield, cracking it. After calling his friend at the garage to see if he can fix it, Devin examines the windshield and finds the body of a large wasp, which is what hit the glass, and grabs a sample jar to collect the remains. Devin takes the jar back to the morgue to show Katherine, only to find Jane there examining the coroner’s murder. After an awkward conversation with Jane, Devin shows Katherine the remains and when she looks at them, she thinks it would be a good idea to check out where the busker died and Devin agrees to take her there. When they get there, they talk with Beverly briefly, who says that Kelsey would be coming by in a little bit and suggests he meet her but Devin says he would need permission from Jane to do that. Devin and Katherine search Beverly’s basement tool shed for any sign of the nest or swarm but can’t find anything. As they leave, Katherine asks Devin what he is going to do and Devin admits that he wants to go back to grad school but doesn’t want to abandon the town when there might be a killer wasp infestation. Some time later, Kelsey is dropped off at Beverly’s house and after they talk for a while, she sneaks out into the back yard and finds Eli next door. She talks with him for a little while, asking him where his bees are, before he heads inside his trailer. Inside, Eli opens a hidden hatch in his floor and heads down to a secret lab, where he has a giant swarm of wasps locked in a glass cage. Eli takes some peaches he collected from outside and as he injects them with some syringes, the wasps appear to get agitated. When Eli leaves, Kelsey sneaks into his trailer and finds his hidden lab, where she bites one of the peaches but throws it away, as it tastes bad, and when the wasps become super agitated, she quickly leaves. In town, Mayor Blatz is at the church when he sees Father Francis acting erratically and when he asks if he is ok, Francis calls out Blatz’s name before a swarm of wasps issue out of his mouth and attack Blatz, killing him. In town, more and more people are acting strange, with the people showing welts from being stung and a buzzing sound coming from them. Devin is trying to make his way through town, which is jammed due to a police officer’s erratic behavior, when he receives a call from Katherine who is in a nearby alley. When Devin meets with her, she tells him that the wasps were bio-engineered and apparently meant to be used as a weapon and she asks him to come with her to help figure this out but Devin says he has to get Jane and Kelsey to safety. As he drives off, a car pulls up next to Katherine and she comments about him being a boy scout before she gets in the car and tells the men inside to drive. As Beverly calls Kelsey to come inside, having heard the swarm overhead, the wasps begin attacking the house and Beverly and Kelsey decide to leave, cutting through a corn field as a short cut into town. Devin sees them and chases after them and when they get separated, the wasps attack and kill Beverly. Kelsey runs off screaming when Devin catches up to her and as she asks why he looks like her dad, he explains that her dad was his twin brother. Devin says they need to get away from the wasps and Kelsey suggests he talk to Eli and takes him to his lab. Meanwhile, Jane goes to Beverly’s house to look for Beverly and Kelsey and when she can’t find them in the house, she ends up looking for them outside and eventually discovers Eli’s lab. Entering the lab, she holds Eli at gunpoint and starts asking him question when Kelsey and Devin show up. Eli explains what he had done with the wasps and Devin says that he will help Eli kill them while Jane and Kelsey get to safety but Jane says the town’s safety is her responsibility and she asks Eli to take Kelsey to the church. Elsewhere, Katherine uses a computer to contact her HQ and they tell her to locate Eli, as he must be in town and as they continue driving, they spot Eli with Kelsey heading to the church. When Eli and Kelsey enter the church, Eli confronts Kelsey about the peach and when she admits she ate part of one, he tells her the wasps now think that she is their queen. Suddenly, Father Francis appears and Eli tells Kelsey to hide but when Francis spots her and tries to grab her, he suddenly falls apart, revealing a swarm of wasps emerging from his remains. Blatz shows up and moves to grab Kelsey when Katherine shoots him. Eli thanks Katherine’s arrival but Katherine shoot Eli and while her men grab Kelsey, Katherine approaches Eli and forces a wasp into his mouth. Elsewhere, Jane and Devin are driving and as they discuss Dan, Jane admits that she missed Devin more than her husband. When the swarm suddenly begins attacking Devin’s van, they head to a bridge and Devin rigs his van to explode as a means to kill them but it doesn’t work and they are forced to run. They eventually coe to a sewer opening and make their way through the sewers into the old cement factory, where they find several of the townsfolk acting as wasp drones while Kelsey is entombed in a giant wasp’s nest. Katherine appears and tells them that she killed Eli and plans on killing them in order to finish her job but Jane pulls out her gun and kills her. The human drones begin moving towards them in order to defend the nest and they are forced to fight them as they back away. They are surprised to see Eli show up and he tells them that the military is there to destroy the nest and kill him. Eli helps them rescue Kelsey, who Jane reveals is actually Devin’s daughter, and they manage to make their way outside just as the helicopters begin firing on the building. The 4 make it to the woods outside the building and Eli gives Kelsey his whistle and tells them to leave, just as he is shot by a sniper and Kelsey cries out for him as Jane and Devin carry her away. 4 months later, Devin, Jane, and Kelsey are shown to still be living in Black Rock and as Kelsey plays in the back and watches some ants, Jane, who appears to be in the early stages of pregnancy, and Devin comment about her becoming a scientist and playfully argue if she is being like Eli or her father. Unknown to them, a wasp emerges from a nest nearby and Kelsey, seemingly reacting to it, smashes the ant nest.

Have to admit, this was a bit of a let down on several fronts. The acting was ok, with Robert Englund doing a good job as Eli and his interactions with Rebecca Windheim (Kelsey) were just great. I also liked Sheena Larkin (Beverly) but felt that the main stars of this movie were honestly pretty boring. The story sounded interesting, with the idea of bio-engineering wasps to attack enemy forces being straight out of science fiction. However, the end result in this movie kind of felt a little disjointed, with the various scene cuts not exactly blending together and making it seem almost haphazardly shot. The special effects with the wasps and the victims were pretty good, with the scene of Father Francis dissolving into the wasps being better than I would have thought it would be. However, the scene where Katherine and Jane shoot at each other was completely stupid and looked even worse. It’s some fun movie watching but is not the greatest thing out there.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

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comedy, horror, movie, movie review, sci-fi, zombie movie

July 2nd, 2018 Movie – Zombie Strippers

zombie strippers

Sometimes, you hear the title of a movie, and who is starring in it, and you just know that it is going to be a train wreck. Take today’s movie for instance. When I first heard about this movie, and that Robert Englund was starring in it, my initial thought was that this would be an interesting movie to watch. Then I heard that Jenna Jameson was also starring in it. Well, that right there just put it into a whole different category. I know that I am being somewhat judgmental on Jenna Jameson’s acting ability but let’s face it, her acting was is not what she is famous for. Anyways, when this movie came out on DVD, I just had to pick up a copy so let’s see just what we have in store with today’s movie, Zombie Strippers.

The plot: In an alternate reality, President George Bush has been elected to a 4th term in office and abolished Congress because they were “cramping his style”. The United States military is stretched thin due to the continuing wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Iran, Lebanon, Libya, Pakistan, Venezuela, France, Canada, and Alaska. Due to the shortage of soldiers, a secret laboratory, run by Dr. Crushfield, is working on a virus to try and reanimate the dead so they can send soldiers back into battle. However, when their test subjects don’t turn out like they wanted, a team of marines, led by Major Camus,  is sent in to deal with the zombies. Crushfield and his partner, Dr. Genet, explain what they were trying to do and tells them that destroying the brain will them for good, while an EMP blast will stun them. The marines head out, killing some zombies while maneuvering the majority of them into a trap so they can blast them all with their EMP guns. As Pvt. Byrdflough (pronounced “Bird Flu”) checks on one of the zombies, they all start moving again and the marines begin shooting at them but Byrdflough, who was bitten by a zombie, hides the bite from his team and escapes the lab as they finish killing the rest of the zombies. Trying to find a place to hide, he ends up at Rhino, an underground strip-club as a Congress had made public nudity illegal before being abolished. As the various dancers go on stage, a new girl named Jessy shows up to start work and as she is about to go on stage, she is confronted by her boyfriend Davis, who is uncomfortable with her doing this. Jessy goes on stage and starts to do her routine but chickens out and rushes off stage. Back in the dressing room, Ian Essko, the club’s owner, chastises Jessy and wants her to go back out there but Kat, his star performer, says she will go on in her place. As Kat begins her routine, Byrdflough, who has turned into a zombie, jumps onstage and attacks her, ripping her throat. As Essko yells at his DJ Cole and janitor Paco to throw Byrdflough in the basement, then the three gather with Madame Blavatski, the girl’s trainer/coordinator, to figure out what they are going to do about Kat’s body when she suddenly stands up and heads backstage. The other strippers are surprised to see her there but Kat seems perfectly fine, as the virus that creates zombies allowed women to maintain more of their identity than when men were infected. When Kat goes on stage, the crowd seems to enjoy it even more than usual, throwing more money on the stage. Kat takes one of the men back for a private lap dance but when they are alone, she proceeds to rip him apart and eat him. Essko, Cole, Paco, and Blavatski witness the aftermath and Essko tells them to clean the mess up but a few minutes later, the go to his office and show him the dead man’s head, which is still moving. Lilith, a goth dancer with a death fetish, asks Kat to turn her and she heads out on stage to dance before grabbing a guy of her own and killing him, and Essko and the others place the dead man in a cage in the basement. The next day, the club has more customers and Kat and Lilith are becoming huge hits so Sox asks Kat to turn her as well. The three zombie strippers become the most popular dancers on the stage and Essko is content to let them continue killing some of the customers, placing the bodies in the cage in the basement, as he is making more money than ever. Jeannie, Kat’s biggest rival, is tired of being upstaged by Kat so she decides to become a zombie herself, heading down to the basement where Byrdflough is still being kept and letting him bite her. Her sycophant, Gaia, chickens out and runs back to the dressing room but later decides to go through with it and heads down to the basement. When she doesn’t see Jeannie or Byrdflough anywhere, she heads over to the cage and allows the caged zombies to bite her. On stage, a now zombified Jeannie heads out on stage and begins to fight with Kat, with the crowd cheering them on. In the basement, Gaia reanimates and proceeds to let the other zombies out of their cage. Essko sees this and decides to lock the doors so nobody can escape, hoping to contain the problem so he doesn’t get in trouble. As the zombies begin attacking the customers, Cole, Blavatski, Paco, Jessy, Davis, and Berenge (another stripper), take refuge in Essko’s office. Deciding to kill the zombies, they arm themselves with some of Essko’s guns and begin firing at the zombies but don’t manage to kill any of them. As the zombies begin swarming them, Jessy and Davis run and take shelter in the basement while Berenge locks herself in Kat’s private dressing room. Paco locks himself in the janitor’s closet but then tries making one final stand before he gets ripped to shreds. Essko, Cole, and Blavatski head back to Essko’s office but when Blavatski lets Gaia and some other zombies in, both her and Cole are killed. Gaia heads towards Essko but before he can, two of Camus’s marines rescue him. Back on stage, Jeannie rips the flesh from her limbs and prepares to finish her off but the marines kill Kat, then Camus kills Jeannie. As the marines finish killing the zombies, Essko is confronted by Lilith and Sox, who perform a sex act on him, then Essko is captured, as he is mistakenly believed to be a zombie. Jessy and Davis are rescued, while Berenge is mistaken for a zombie and killed, and as they are about to leave, Camus finds Crushfield had been at the strip club. Camus confronts Crushfield, who admits that he let the virus out on purpose, as it was hoped a zombie outbreak would distract the American population from realizing how badly the government was screwing up the war efforts and economy. As a clean up crew arrives, Camus and his team leave, as do Jessy and Davis, and as he goes to leave, Crushfield notices a trashbag moving and goes to open it, and as the screen fades to black, you hear him being bitten by the zombie head that was inside.

Zombie Strippers received mostly negative reviews from the critics, holding a 40% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “Though intentionally campy, Zombie Strippers suffers from poor execution, and never rises above its silly premise.” The movie was allegedly inspired by Eugene Ionesco’s play “Rhinoceros”, and Robert Englund’s character and the name of the club as a nod to that source. The movie had a $1 million budget but it wound up coming in under budget.

This was about as ridiculous of a movie as you could expect to find and wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. The acting from some of the characters was ok, and completely over the top with some others. I thought Robert Englund (Essko) was pretty decent and Jenna Jameson (Kat) was surprisingly decent as well, but all of the marines were over exaggerated. The story was interesting but honestly felt like a bunch of stuff kind of got thrown in there just to see if it would work. The make-up for the zombies was pretty decent and I liked some of the effects but there were some times they went overboard. For instance, the zombie stripper fight between Kat and Jeannie was pretty ridiculous, especially when Kat started using the ping pong balls and billiard balls (yes, she did use them they way you are thinking she did). It’s some ridiculous fun but not worth a watch if you are looking for a new zombie movie to laugh at.

Rating: 3 out of 5

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horror, movie, movie review, mystery

April 12th, 2018 Movie – Urban Legend

urban legend

Urban Legends. Everyone has heard of at least one in their life time and probably told just as many to other people. The good thing about urban legends is that they can be the setup, and sometimes the basis, for a horror movie. Well, someone decided that why use just one urban legend when you can do a whole movie about a lot of them. Now I first heard about this movie and I will admit that my curiosity was piqued about it but I never went to see it in theaters, choosing to rent it when it came out on video. During the dying Blockbuster days, I picked up a copy on the cheap so let’s see if this was worth it as I watch today’s movie, Urban Legend.

The plot: A young woman named Michelle is driving on the highway when it starts raining. Finding herself low on gas, she stops at a run down gas station and is startled when the attendant suddenly appears at her window. Michelle hands him her credit card and after starting to pump her gas, the man looks inside her car then heads into the store. A few minutes later, the man returns and stutteringly tells her that her credit card company is on the phone and needs to speak with her. Nervous, Michelle grabs a can of mace from her purse and heads inside but when she picks up the phone, she hears the busy signal just as the attendant locks the door. The attendant tries to grab her but she fights him off, and tries to leave, macing him when he manages to grab her. Using the phone to break the window, Michelle climbs out and rushes to her car and drives off, leaving the attendant standing there screaming that someone was in her back seat. Michelle drives away, still freaked by the encounter when she sees someone rise up from her back seat and kill her with an axe. At Pendleton University, Parker Riley is telling the story of a supposed massacre that happened at Stanley Hall to Natalie Simons and Brenda Bates but their friend Paul Gardner, who works for the school newspaper, discredits the story as a hoax. Later, Brenda and Natalie walk by a hole in the wall of a dorm that supposedly is able to summon the dead and they try it only to be scared by another friend, Damon Brooks, before Natalie heads back to her dorm room. The next day, Brenda, Natalie, Parker, and Damon are attending Professor Wexler’s class on urban legends when he has Brenda and Damon come up to do a demonstration disproving the legend about pop rocks and soda. As they leave class, Brenda and Natalie see Dean Adams and security guard Reese Wilson removing all of the school newspapers in the bins due to Paul’s story about Michelle’s death. As everyone talks about Michelle’s death, Natalie appears to be especially freaked out by it but doesn’t say why. That night, Damon invites Natalie out to talk about Michelle’s death and he takes her out to the woods but apparently used it only as an excuse to try and hook up with her. Natalie punches him and tells him to take her back and he relents, stepping out of the car to use the restroom. As he is finishing up, someone sneaks up behind him and starts strangling him with a rope. As Natalie yells out for him to hurry up, she is confronted by someone wearing a hooded parka and quickly gets back in the car. As she tries to start the car, she hears something scraping on the roof, not realizing it is Damon, whose is hanging from a tree limb above her and his feet are barely touching the roof of the car. Natalie manages to start the car and drives off, unknowingly hanging Damon as the rope was tied to the car’s trailer hitch. Natalie tries to run the stranger over she finds the car can’t go forward any more due to the rope so she puts the car in reverse and ends up crashing into the tree, and Damon’s body falls onto the hood of the car. Natalie runs back to the college and tells Reese what happened but when they go back to the scene, they find the car and body missing and Reese thinks Natalie is on something. Natalie tries telling her friends but Parker says that it is probably Damon playing a practical joke like he always does. As they keep talking, Natalie realizes that Damon’s death and Michelle’s are similar to urban legends and she heads to the library to get a book on urban legends, running into Sasha, Parker’s girlfriend and campus radio DJ, as she does. Meanwhile, Natalie’s roommate Tosh is attempting to arrange a hookup only to be attacked in their room. Natalie walks in but, having turned on the lights to find Tosh having sex before, she mistakes Tosh’s muffled cries as her having sex and simply keeps the lights off before heading to bed. When she wakes up, Natalie notices a pool of blood near Tosh’s body and finds that she has been murdered and the killer had written “Aren’t you glad you didn’t turn on the lights” in her blood above Natalie’s bed, mimicking another urban legend. As the paramedics are brought in to take away the body, Dean Adams and Reese talk with Natalie and Adams tries to convince her not to say anything to the police. Paul follows her out of there and asks her what is going on and shows her a picture of Michelle’s yearbook and asks why she didn’t say she knew Michelle. Natalie tells him her theory and Paul doesn’t really believe her but decides to help her check out the truth behind the Stanley Hall Massacre. They go to look at the school records only to find the records for 1973 are missing and when they ask the janitor if he knows anything, he says to talk with Wexler. They head to Wexler’s office and getting no answer, Paul breaks in. When they start looking around, Natalie finds a secret room with a hooded parka and an axe inside but they are caught by Wexler. Natalie and Paul are taken to Adams’ office and they asks him about the massacre but he doesn’t answer, telling NAtalie she is lucky to have gotten accepted as she has a reckless endangerment charge on her record and tells Paul that he has been kicked off of the school paper. Later, Natalie goes to see Brenda at the pool when she sees a parka clad person approaching her and she tries to warn her, breaking a window before the person is revealed to be another swimmer. As Brenda tries talking with Natalie, Natalie reveals to her that she knew Michelle and that when they were in high school, they played a joke based on an urban legend and ended up accidentally killing someone. Meanwhile, Adams is preparing to leave when he is spooked by Reese, who says they should get some more security for the weekend but Adams refuses, wanting to keep everything quiet and under wraps. As Reese leaves, Adams is attacked when someone underneath his car slashes his achilles tendon, then runs him over with his own car as he tries to crawl away, impaling him on the parking deck’s security spikes. At the newspaper, Paul is cleaning out his desk when he finds an old newspaper showing that the massacre did happen and Wexler is the only survivor. Brenda convinces Natalie to come to the Stanley Hall Massacre party when she runs into Paul, who tells her she was right. Paul explains his theory about Wexler and how he might be the killer and as Natalie gets frightened, he says he won’t let anything happen to her. Paul kisses Natalie but they are caught by Brenda, who has a crush on Paul, and she calls Natalie a slut and runs outside, where she sits on the steps and cries. Paul tries to convince Parker to stop the party but when Parker mocks him, he tells Natalie he is going to go get some help. Meanwhile, Parker gets a phone call from someone saying he is going to die but when Parker checks the caller ID, he notices it is coming from Damon’s room. Thinking it is Damon playing a joke, he asks if this is the legend about the babysitter and the call is coming from upstairs but the caller says it is the legend about the old woman that dries off her dog in the microwave. Parker checks the microwave to find his dog has exploded inside and when he goes to the bathroom to throw up, the killer attacks him and force feeds him some pop rocks and drain killer to kill him. Sasha leaves the party to work her shift on the radio and as she takes a call, the killer kills her producer and attacks her while she is on air. Natalie hears Sasha screaming and heads over to the station only to see the killer kill Sasha. She heads over to Paul’s dorm to get him and tells him what happened and he says they should leave, but Natalie is starting to get suspicious of him. The two run into Brenda and they tell her Sasha is dead and they all leave in Paul’s SUV. As they drive, Natalie complains about a smell and they stop at a gas station to see if the phones work there. Paul heads inside to try the phones while Natalie and Brenda wait in the car but the two hear Wexler’s alarm and find his dead body in the back. The two girls run through the woods back towards campus but get separated and Natalie ends up getting picked up by the janitor. As they are driving, Natalie sees his parka and thinks he might be the killer and tries to get out of the car but he tells her the doors won’t open from the outside. As they keep driving, they see a car approaching with it’s lights off and the janitor flashes his high beams to alert the other car but Natalie realizes it is the killer in Paul’s car, as the car turns around and follows them, constantly flashing it’s high beams at them and eventually forcing them off the road. The janitor dies in the crash and Natalie and manages to reach the campus, where she hears Brenda screaming. Going to find her friend, Natalie heads inside the abandoned Stanley Hall, only to be attacked by Brenda. When she comes to, Natalie finds herself tied to a bed and Brenda explains that the man that Natalie and Michelle killed was her boyfriend and she was getting her revenge. Brenda starts to cut into Natalie to mimic the kidney thief legend when Reese shows up to rescue her. As Natalie frees herself, Reese starts to frisk Brenda, who pulls out a switchblade and slashes her. Reese drops her gun and Brenda and Reese struggle for it before Brenda manages to shoot Reese, then points the gun at Natalie. Paul shows up and tries to talk Brenda out of shooting Natalie but Brenda points the gun at both of them. Reese shoots Brenda in the arm, causing her to drop the gun and Natalie picks it up and shoots her, knocking her out the window. Natalie and Paul check on Reese, who is bleeding but still alive, and they leave to get help but as they are driving down the road, Brenda appears in the back seat and tries attacking them with an axe but Paul slams into the side of a bridge and goes flying out the windshield and plunges into the river below. Some time later, at another college, some students are talking about the murders when Brenda, still alive and under a new identity, says that they are telling it wrong and says she will tell them how it really went.

Urban Legend met with poor results from the critics, holding a 20% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “Elements of Scream reappear in a vastly inferior vehicle.” In keeping with the movie’s title and theme, 11 urban legends were reenacted and another 5 were referenced during the film. When Paul and Natalie walk into the hidden room in Professor William Wexler’s office, a puppet of Freddy Krueger can be seen just before they see the axe, which is a nod to Robert Englund, who plays Wexler in the movie but is most famous for playing Freddy in the Nightmare On Elm Street movies. The movie was a box office hit, earning $72.5 million off of a $14 million budget and would spawn 2 sequels.

I had high hopes for this movie but it honestly was kind of a let down. The acting was ok, with all of the main characters doing ok jobs, and I mean just that. They were ok but nobody really wowed me and in some cases, they could be embarrassingly bad. I personally liked Robert Englund as Wexler, who made for a great red herring in the movie. I also liked Loretta Devine, as her character of Security Officer Reese Wilson made for some unintentional comedic relief at times. The story was interesting and I did like how they tried using the urban legends to make unique kills instead of making it a stereotypical slasher movie. The special effects were ok, but I feel like they could have done more with some of the kills. Good idea but poor execution (no pun intended) make this just another average horror movie.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5

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movie, movie review, thriller

September 18th, 2017 Movie – Slashed Dreams

slashed dreams

I have to say that this year really seems to have flown by. I mean, can you believe that it is almost October. That has absolutely nothing to do with today’s movie, I am just amazed at how quickly time flies. Now, today’s movie comes from the Chilling Classics box set, so there is no telling how good of a movie I will be watching. So let’s see how the day is going to start out with today’s movie, Slashed Dreams.

The plot: At college, Jenny gets a letter from her friend Michael and is reading it when one of her classmates, Robert, sits down next to her on the bench. Jenny starts to tell Robert about what Michael wrote, how he built a cabin in the woods and has never been happier, when her boyfriend, Marshall, shows up and jealously pulls Jenny off the bench and walks away with her. During a philosophy class, Marshall and Robert get into an argument and later, Jenny tells Marshall that she isn’t happy with what he is saying and is finding herself unhappy with her life. At a party at Marshall’s house, where he is hazing a pledge for his fraternity, Marshall complains to another girl, Tina, about Jenny and Robert being too close and Tina tells him that they have been friends since they were in grade school. As Jenny and Robert talk about Michael and discuss going to see him, Marshall gets jealous and yells at them, telling them to get out of his house. Robert and Jenny decide to go ahead and head out to see Michael but as they are driving along the highway, Marshall, Tina, and another kid drive past them and throw something on their windshield, causing them to pull over. When Marshall turns around and drives right towards them, then swerves at the last minute, Robert gets out of his car to yell at Marshall but the other guy tries to calm him down. Marshall tries pleading with Jenny to come back with him but she tells him it is over between them and tells him to leave. Robert and Jenny continue driving and eventually reach the county store that Michael had mailed the letter from. When they ask the store’s owner about Michael, he tells them that he knows Michael but hasn’t seen him for quite some time. When they ask for directions to where Michael is staying, the owner tries to talk them out of going but eventually tells them the area and offers them a knife, saying that strange things have been going on there, but they refuse it and head out. Robert and Jenny begin hiking along the mountain and make camp for the night but in the morning, they find a bear has entered their campsite and are forced to lie still as it proceeds to eat some of their food before eventually walking away. As they scrounge for food in the woods, Robert and Jenny have some fun and end up getting closer to each other. As Jenny goes to use the bathroom, she finds a cabin in the woods and quickly approaches it, looking inside to see if Michael is there. Robert soon joins her and as they look around for a bit before Jenny decides to get cleaned up in the nearby pond and convinces Robert to join her when he shows up. As they are fooling around in the water, two men, Levon and Danker, are watching them and Danker eventually calls out to them. As the surprised couple face the strangers, Levon apologizes and introduces themselves to the two, then asks what they are doing up there. Robert explains that they are there to see Michael and ask if they know him. Levon says he does and asks if they have a gun, as they are hunting poachers. After the two leave, Robert and Jenny head back to the cabin and settle in for the night, deciding that if Michael doesn’t show up in the morning that they will head back. Jenny says she doesn’t care if Michael shows up as she is glad to be there with Robert and they two start kissing and eventually have sex. That night, Robert wakes up when he notices that the fire has gone out when Levon and Danker suddenly burst into the cabin, knock Robert unconscious and proceed to rape and beat Jenny. When Robert comes too, he tries to comfort Jenny, then heads outside to give her some time to herself. As he is waiting outside, he sees Michael walking up and greets his friend. Michael is happy to see him and when he hears Jenny is here too, he starts to head inside and go see her but Robert stops him and tells him about the rape. After asking Robert if he is ok, Michael heads inside the the cabin and tries to tend to Jenny and help her deal with what happened. Meanwhile, Robert is walking through the woods and comes across Levon and Danker arguing, as Danker wants to head back up to the cabin and attack Jenny again but Levon is trying to stop him. When Levon cut’s Danker’s leg and moves to finish him off, Robert leaps out of the bushes and starts to attack Levon. Michael and Jenny hear the commotion and run out of the cabin, stopping Robert from killing Levon. As Levon and Danker make their escape, Robert apologizes to Jenny as she holds him and Michael soon joins them. As Robert and Jenny both deal with what happened, Jenny reads an excerpt from a book in Michael’s cabin, as the two are seen walking through a field hand in hand.

Well that was an interesting, and slightly disturbing movie. The acting was ok, with Peter Hooten (Robert) and Kathrine Baumann (Jenny) doing good jobs in their roles while Robert Englund (Michael) put in a brief but very well done performance. The story felt pretty disjointed, starting off with Jenny dealing with her jealous and possessive boyfriend, then moves to the trip to the mountain by Robert and Jenny, then ending with the rape and everyone dealing with it afterwards. Honestly, I feel like the writer wasn’t sure what kind of movie he wanted to make so he just put in every idea he had brainstormed. There was a decent amount of drama involved in the movie, particularly centered around Jenny; first with he relationship with Marshall and his jealousy and then later with her being raped and dealing with it afterwards. Most likely, this was prime material for a drive in but I don’t know if that many people will want to watch it.

Rating: 2 out of 5

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