Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Pumpkinhead Movie Review 263

Pumpkinhead is a 1988 horror movie directed by Stan Winston and starring Lance Henriksen and John D'Aquino.

In 1957, some creature is chasing a man through the woods. The locals won't help him and they lock their doors and the man gets killed by whatever it is. Cut to present day and a man called Ed Harley(Henriksen) has a little shop in the countryside. He lives with his son, Billy and he brings him with him to the store. A group of young people are on their way to a cabin to stay when they stop at the store for some supplies. They have some dirt bikes with them and one of the group, Joel, decides to ride it around. Billy's dog chases after it and Billy follows. Joel knocks Billy down and kills him.Ed had gone home for a few minutes and when he arrives back, there is only one person left, Steve, who tries to explain what happened. The others have gone on to the cabin. Ed is very angry and he wants revenge.

Ed goes to an old witch and he tells her what happened. She can't bring Billy back from the dead, but she can summon a horrible creature from Hell called Pumpkinhead. He does as she says and digs its corpse up and brings it back to her shack. She performs a spell on it and it comes alive. Ed buries Billy and then Pumpkinhead goes on his murderous revenge spree. He finds the youngsters and he begins to kill them one by one. Ed has a change of heart and he decides that killing them isn't the way to feel better so he tries to kill Pumpkinhead. He can't so he gets the remaining youngsters and he takes them back to his house. Pumpkinhead discovers them and there is a showdown. Ed realises that if he shoots himself, then Pumpkinhead will die too. He shoots himself and when he dies, Pumpkinhead dies too. The old woman finds his body and buries it in Pumpkinheads grave, ready for the next time...

This was a good movie, I liked Henriksen in it. It is well worth a watch. I know that there is plenty of sequels, so I am going to dig those up and watch them too. I am giving this a 6/10.

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Tingler Movie Review 262

The Tingler is a 1959 horror movie directed by William Castle and starring Vincent Price,Darryl Hickman and Judith Evelyn. This film is well known for using lots of gimmicks to scare audiences.

Price plays Dr.Warren Chapin who performs autopsies at a prison. While performing one, he meets a man called Oliver Higgins(Philip Coolidge) who owns a cinema. They chat and he brings Warren to meet his deaf and mute wife,Martha(Evelyn). Warren has a keen interest in fear and he sees that Martha passes out from the sight of blood. He is intrigued by how people react to terror. He goes back to his house and his lab. He has a theory that when people are really scared, a creature called The Tingler appears in their spine and makes it tingle. The creature can kill unless the person can scream. Warren has an assistant, David(Hickman) who is also interested in the effects of fear on people. Warren's wife is Isabel(Patricia Cutts) and she cheats on Warren openly. Their marriage is a sham and Isabel's sister, Lucy(Pamela Lincoln) is David's fiancee. Isabel is a bit of a cow and she shows little interest in Warren's experiments.

Warren meets Oliver again and he discovers that Martha is not well. Warren goes to see her and gives her a sedative to relax her. She awakens later and has horrible visions of creatures out to kill her. She dies of fright. Oliver calls Warren and tells him. Warren brings her to his lab to do an autopsy and finds The Tingler in her spine. He takes it out and puts it into a box. Unfortunately, Isabel sees it and she dopes Warren sets The Tingler on him. He only just escapes with his life. He discovers that Oliver is the one who frightened his wife to death. He set up the visions to scare her and kill her. Warren comes over with The Tingler. He needs to put it back where it came from- Martha's spine. Before he can, it escapes into the cinema and frightens everyone. Warren tells the audience to scream as loudly as they can and they manage to capture it.

Warren puts it back into Martha's body and he leaves intending to call the police and tell them about Oliver. Oliver is suddenly confronted with Martha who seems to have come back to life. Oliver is scared and he can't scream. Picture fades to black. We can hear him drop to the floor, presumably dead. This was an enjoyable movie. It is old, but I liked the idea of The Tingler. Price was very good in this. It is well worth a watch. It gets a 7/10.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Haunting of Whaley House Movie Review 261

The Haunting of Whaley House is a 2012 horror movie directed by Jose Prendes and starring Alex Arleo, Arielle Brachfeld and Stephanie Greco.

Whaley House is a local tourist attraction. It is supposed to be haunted. Penny(Greco) works as a your guide for the house along with Bethany(Lynn Lowry) who knows a lot about the house. While they are giving a tour one of the tourists has a mysterious reaction and has to go to hospital. Bethany warns Penny never to go inside the house at night. Of course, Penny and her friends decide to go there for a look at night! A psychic called Keith Drummond(Howard McNair) comes along to see if he can meet some ghosts. Penny and her friends look around the house. The tourist from earlier on comes back to the house from the hospital and kills herself because voices from the house tell her to.

One of Pennys pals called Ray(Jason Owsley) has a lot of ghost testing gear with him and he wants to get proof of the haunted house. The group have a seance. Penny asks the spirits some questions and there is some presence there. They all wander through the house looking around. Keith tells them that there are ghosts in the house. He tries to talk to them. One of the group is frightened by the ghosts and falls down the stairs to her death. They decide not to tell the cops. They can't leave the house anyway.
It turns out that there is a portal in the house and there are evil spirits trying to get them. Penny is the one that the ghosts want and the others in the group are killed one by one until she is left. They succeed in killing her and she is trapped in the house. Only Bethany realises that she is there....

This movie was okay, but  not great. Howard McNair who played the psychic, was woeful in the part. His part was ridiculous. When you see the movie, you will understand. It was actually laughable in parts.
I wouldn't watch this again. I will  give it a 3/10.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Hells Kitchen, Season 10 Finale Part 1 and 2

Last week, there were three chefs left and one of them has to go home.

Part One: This week, we find out that it will be Justin and Christina in the finale.Justin has been good all through the series, I am not so sure about Christina. I never really liked her. Dana has to go and I am so happy! I couldn't stand her shouting any longer..She is so irritating. The two finalists get to go to Vegas and they work on their menus with Chef Scott and Chef Andie. Their families are brought to see them and they get to go to a Penn and Teller show. The two chefs are brought up on stage and they have to make five dishes and they will be judged on their food by chefs etc. Christina wins the challenge and she gets first pick of her team for the final service.

Some of the other chefs arrive back and Christina picks Dana,Kimmy,Robyn and Patrick(Watch video above). Justin picked Barbie, Brian, Royce and Clemenza. They all go up to the dorms to discuss their menus. Clemenza is not cooperating with Justin and he is annoying him. Justin tells him to go home if he is not going to be any use to him. Tempers flare and Justin is worried. What will happen? Will Clemenza go home? Will Justin have to make do with only 3 chefs on his team? Let's find out in the second part of the finale!

Part Two:

Clemenza and Justin manage to resolve their differences and they get on with their menu.The women are all thinking that Christina will win. They go into service for the final time that evening. Justin seems to be getting on very well in the kitchen but Clemenza is too slow and he is messing everything up for him. He seems to be stumbling through service. On Christina's team, Dana is awful and she is not getting along well. Christina is really getting annoyed with her friend and she tells her that she will have to pick up the pace. Dana hands up fish that is not cooked well and Chef Ramsay is disgusted with her. 

All in all, the two teams do pretty well. Justin pulls it all together and he is very impressive. Christina is less impressive. She just doesn't seem to have the same leadership skills. The time comes to choose the winner and it is .... Christina(Watch video above). I was shocked by this decision. I can't understand how Chef Ramsay could not choose Justin. He was very good throughout the competition. I guess he wasn't what Chef Ramsay was looking for. All in all, I was disappointed and I thought that it was a bad end to a good season of Hell's Kitchen. That's it until next year!!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Hells Kitchen, Season 10, Episode 18

Last week, Clemenza was sent packing so there are four chefs left and the finale is drawing near!

This week, their families are brought in and there are tears and hugging etc. The final four are taken to a supermarket. They are each given $15 to buy ingredients for their dish. They have 30 minutes to cook it and the winner will be the one who fetches the highest price for their dish. Some chefs are brought in to judge them.Dana manages to win the challenge and she goes for lunch with a chef. The other three have to sort through bags of rubbish to sort it out.

Service begins and the chefs have to pass a quality control test on the pass. Justin is first up and he has to lead the team. Dana seems to be dragging her heels(watch video above). He passes the quality control test and Chef Ramsay is pleased with him. Dana is next up but her leadership skills leave a lot to be desired. She fails the quality control test. Barbie starts her turn and she isn't doing great. She passes the quality control test. Last up is Christina and she is having problems with Dana who is really slow. She is messing it up for Christina. She passes the quality control test also. So who will be going through to the final??? Barbie is the first one to go home.There are three left now. Will it be Dana, Justin or Christina who go home too? We have to wait until next time to find out!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Dark Shadows Movie Review 260

Dark Shadows is a 2012 horror/comedy movie based on the 1960's television soap of the same name. It is directed by Tim Burton and stars Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Eva Green and Helena Bonham Carter.

In the town of Collinsport in Maine in the 1700's, the Collins family have a shipping business which is very successful and the town is named after them. One of them, Barnabas Collins(Depp) has a fling with the maid, Angelique Bouchard(Green) but she falls in love with him. She is a witch. He doesn't feel the same way and he rejects her. In revenge, she causes the death of his parents and his true love, Josette(Bella Heathcote) by causing her to jump off of a cliff . Angelique turns Barnabas into a vampire and places a curse on his family. She gets the locals to grab him and chain him in a coffin and bury him.

Cut to 1972 and a girl called Victoria Winters(Heathcote) is coming to Collinsport to become a governess to one of the Collins family. She meets the matriarch, Elizabeth(Pfeiffer), her brother Roger(Jonny Lee Miller), her daughter Carolyn(Chloe Grace Moretz), the psychiatrist Dr.Julia Hoffman(Carter), Roger's son, David(Gulliver McGrath) and the caretaker of the house,Willie(Jackie Earle Haley). They seem a bit strange. Barnabas finds himself set free when a group of construction workers dig him up on the site. He gets free and enjoys a nice meal of them! He then makes his way to the house to see what has happened while he has been away. He looks around and sees that things are very different now. Everything has changed. He meets Willie when he reaches the house and makes him his servant. Elizabeth meets him and thinks that he is a conman. He assures her that he isn't and leads her to an underground passage where there is so much wealth hidden. They agree to share it between them.

He meets the others in the family and they think that his dress and manner are very weird. He sets eyes on Vicki who looks exactly like his dead fiancee, Josette. Meanwhile, Angelique(Green) is running a hugely successful company which is bankrupting the Collins' business. She wants them to be broke. She owns most of the town now and she will not stop until everything is hers. She learns that Barnabas is back and she is determined to ruin him again. The Collins family set up their business once again and they start becoming successful much to the anger of witch Angelique. She seduces Barnabas and they have sex. She wants to be his partner and his lover but he rejects her. She tells him that she will destroy him and his family. Dr. Hoffman finds out that he is a vampire and she sets up a transfusion so she can try and purify his blood so he can be human again.

Barnabas has a party and Alice Cooper shows up. He and Vicki get closer, but Angelique sees them and she swears revenge. Barnabas finds out that Dr. Hoffman was transferring his blood into her body and trying to be a vampire. He kills her and throws her in the water. Everyone in the family realises that he is a vampire. Angelique threatens him and tells him if he doesn't be her lover, she will put him back into the coffin for another two hundred years. He refuses and she puts him back into the coffin and leaves him. David rescues him and they go back to the house. Angelique tells the townsfolk that Barnabas killed the doctor and others and they come for him. His family come to his defence and try to stop her. There is a huge fight and she wrecks the house. It turns out that she killed David's mother and he calls her from the dead and she injures Angelique.Angelique knows the game is up. She pulls out her heart and gives it to Barnabas and dies. He has to save Vicki who is under a wicked spell by Angelique. She is close to walking off of the same cliff where Josette died. He turns her into a vampire so they can be together forever. Meanwhile, Dr Hoffman is awake underwater and she is a vampire....

This was an entertaining movie. It didn't know if it was a comedy or a horror which was quite confusing and compared to the series, it probably wouldn't stand up. As a stand alone movie, it was good fun and Depp was very good in the lead role. I am giving it a 6/10.

Monday, September 3, 2012

The Slumber Party Massacre Movie Review 259

The Slumber Party Massacre is a 1982 horror movie directed by Amy Holden Jones. It stars Michelle Michaels,Robin Stille and Brinke Stevens.

The story is pretty basic- a mass murderer called Russ Thorn(Michael Villella) is on the loose after escaping from prison. He is a vicious killer with a love for murdering people with his trusty power drill. A girl called Trish(Michaels) is alone for the weekend as her parents are going away. Her nosey neighbour, Mr.Contant(Rigg Kennedy) is keeping an eye on her for them. Trish is inviting her friends around for a slumber party. Her friends are Kim,Jackie and Diane. Trish wants to invite a new girl at school called Valerie(Stille) but Valerie won't go when she hears Diane bitching about her behind her back. Meanwhile, Russ Thorn is hanging around the school. He is watching Trish and her friends. He kills a phone repair woman in broad daylight in her van. He also kills a student in the school.

That night, the friends get together for their slumber party. Valerie happens to live very close to Trish and she is at home with her sister,Courtney. Courtney wants to go over to the slumber party, but Valerie won't let her. Mr. Contant is one of the first victims of Thorn as he begins his killing spree. The girls are unaware at first of the killing going on around them and Diane and her boyfriend are killed as the girls think that they are making out. When the pizza boy drops dead on the front porch, then they start to panic. Jackie and Kim are killed and it is down to Trish to survive. Valerie and her sister realise that something isn't right at the house and they come over to help. The three of them have to get away from Thorn. They finally manage to kill him and they all wait for the cops to arrive.

This was a fun movie. There isn't too much depth to it, but I liked the idea of the killer with a drill coming after the girls. It was light hearted entertainment and it doesn't require too much brain power. See it if you can, it is worth the watch. I am giving it a 6/10.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Amanda's Horror Years- 1978

1978- Hmm. Was this a good or bad year for horror???Well, there were some great movies released and then some not so great.

Let's start with the best, of course. Halloween was released in this year and it changed the face of horror movies. The slasher was born and the guy with the mask and the knife became a horror movie staple. This wasn't the first horror to feature a stalker guy, but it made a huge impact. Jamie Lee Curtis was the unfortunate victim of the deranged Michael Myers. Her pals started to drop like flies and it led to the famous end sequence and who could forget that wonderful title music? John Carpenter gave us such a great film and it can be watched at any time of year- not just Halloween!!! Another cult movie, I Spit On Your Grave, was released in 1978 and this was very controversial because of the gang rape scene. A young woman, Jennifer Hills rents a cabin in the country to write her novel and she gets the local scumbags all hot and bothered. They decide to rape her and leave her for dead. They think that they have disposed of her, but she ain't dead and she is very angry! I liked this movie and for those who think that it is anti-woman, you should see how Jennifer gets her revenge on the men!!! George A Romero brought us the second in his zombie trilogy Dawn of the Dead. I liked this film. It was very entertaining and it is a precursor to The Walking Dead! Without this movie, there would be no Walking Dead, I think. A group of survivors hole up in a shopping mall but the zombies are hungry and they are in the mood for some shopping!

Other movies released this year were The Toolbox Murders- a video nasty which was a bad reputation, but is worth a look. Piranha was another low budget movie which was decent but not a great movie. Martin is a lesser known movie by George A Romero about a young man who believes himself to be a vampire. Are You in the House Alone is a made for TV thriller, but is worth a mention here as the story is solid and I liked it. Long Weekend is another horror/thriller and it was about a couple who go camping in the wild and find that their shabby treatment of the environment catches up with them. Attack of the Killer Tomatoes was a comedy horror about- well, killer tomatoes!!!! Damien:Omen II was a sequel to the original movie, but it lacked the greatness of the original. Jaws II was released with great success and was one of the highest grossing movies of 1978.

All in all, 1978 was a decent year for movies. Halloween was the highlight in my opinion and I still love it now! There were other good movies, but I think that Halloween will be the most remembered one! Let me know if I have omitted any of your favourites!
Blog Widget by LinkWithin