Horror Movie Challenge: Day 30: Movie I Need to See ASAP (You’re Next)

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This Horror Movie Challenge comes from Slasher Studios co-creator Steve Goltz.

One film I need to watch ASAP is, You’re Next. After missing its short lived life at the theaters, I have heard a whirlwind of emotions surrounding this film. Some love it, some hate it. Not much middle ground. From the comments I have heard though, this seems to be one film I will enjoy.

First of all, I am a huge sucker for slashers and need to see them all, old or new. Second, from what I have seen online, the film has a very nice look to it. The cinematography looks solid and the color tone and lighting seems to be fitting. Third, the masks look epic. This film didn’t do as great as we horror fans could have hoped for, but I would still throw on any of these masks for my next Halloween party. Finally, I hear the dark humor will be right up my alley. I hope the comedy hasn’t been hyped up too much, because a few funny lines can really add too a horror film.

The DVD and Blu-ray release is not until mid January, so unless I can catch it at the cheap seats before its theater life dies for good, I’ll have to wait. But until then, I plan to stay away from too many reviews and trailers so I can go in as fresh as possible, and fingers crossed, make this my favorite slasher of the year!

Horror Movie Challenge: Day 29: Horror We Will Never Watch..Again (Texas Chainsaw 3D)

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Todays topic is: “Movie I Will Never Watch.” As much as I want to talk about the Paranormal Activity sequels, we have spent way to much time and thought on those the last few days. So, I’m going to tweak it a bit and go with: “Movie I Will Never Watch Again.” As film lovers we should at least attempt to watch the films that are available to us, right? Well, the film that jumped into my mind as one I will never watch again is, Texas Chainsaw 3D. I had such high hopes for this as we here at Slasher Studios covered it from the first announcement. I enjoy this franchise and was glad to see it alive once again. But, as soon as I found out it was going to be in 3D, I knew I should be worried.

The funny thing is that the 3D stuff was not the aspect that killed this film for me. It was by far and away the characters and story. I found the characters to be unlikable and forgettable. This is one of the greatest horror franchises ever and we as horror fans deserve at least one character we can relate and identify with, or even tolerate for 92 minutes. And what a slap in the face this script was. *Spoiler!!* Heather decides to team up with Leatherface after he just finished chopping up her friends!? This was like a script that had gone through one draft and never looked at again. It’s too bad because so many people were excited to see Leatherface again, but not like this.

Horror Movie Challenge: Day 27: Bad Stephen King Horror (The Langoliers)

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I can handle bad Stephen King films and I can handle bad made-for-TV horror but, when you combine the two you get something pretty unwatchable. Such as the case with 1995’s clunker The Langoliers, a three hour long piece of junk with some of the worst CGI committed to film. The story involving a group of passengers on an airplane made land a plane after just about everyone else has mysteriously disappeared. This would make for a decent Twilight Zone episode but at 3 hours it is just unbearable.

Horror Movie Challenge: Day 26: Worst Sequel (Paranormal Activity 2)

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Hmmm, what should I pick? I have to go with the Paranormal Activity 2. The first one was done just right and I wish it was left alone, but we all know making money is then name if the game in Hollywood. I’ll be the first to say I understand the reasoning behind making the sequels and I know there is a crowd for these, but in my humble opinion, they took away much of the power the original had.

Was the first Paranormal Activity perfect? No, of course not. But it could hold its own against many other films of its style and nobody can deny the success it found. I felt suspense and chills and actually found my self enjoying something so out of my normal slasher comfort zone. Then, immediately after, I popped in #2 and felt instantly let down. It just felt cheap and forced. Found the characters boring and could not get involved in the story.

After viewing this sequel, it has put a damper on its predecessor. Paranormal Activity is something I could have found myself watching again in the future, but now have no real desire to check it out again or even continue with the rest of the franchise. Yes, I may be blowing this out of proportion and probably need to take a step back and just see these sequels for what they are, but many of you have got to agree that Paranormal Activity 2 was a bit of a disappointment. Alright, enough of being such a downer! Let’s go watch some 80’s slashers!

Horror Movie Challenge: Day 25: Lame Franchise (Paranormal Activity)

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Let me start off by saying that I enjoy the original Paranormal Activity. It isn’t a perfect film and too often it feels like it is borrowing wholesale from Blair Witch Project. Nonetheless, it is creepy and fun. The sequels (of which we will get a part 5 next year as well as a spinoff)? Junk. Lazy, lazy junk. Boring lazy junk. I sat through 2 and 3 in the theater hoping against hope this franchise would get better. I give up hope. Why you ask? Two words: Stupid witches.

Horror Movie Challenge: Day 24: Pleasant Surprise (The Faculty)

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For no real good reason, I had put off checking out The Faculty for years and years. I was never a huge fan of Josh Hartnett, so I was turned off right away. I had also heard a few things here and there about the alien abduction and
thought, “ehh.” Well, on a random stop at Goodwill, I spotted The Faculty on VHS. It was half off (blue sticker week), so I decided to take the chance. I popped it in the VCR that night and was pleasantly surprised.

Overall, I must say this was an enjoyable film for myself. I am usually into the straightforward slashers, so this was very much out of the norm for me. I found myself wanting to follow these characters and impressed with how the story
progressed. I thought the school location was perfect and the lighting, cinematography and direction was done without many flaws whatsoever.

When it came to the acting, I didn’t really hate anyone. Instead, I enjoyed most of the characters. John Stewart was a fun addition and Jordana Brewster was looking great as always. Josh Hartnett plays a great…Josh Hartnett, nothing
crazy great about him. With Usher on the cover, I was really expecting him to play a bigger part, but maybe that was for the best. There was some CGI at times, but I didn’t mind it too much as I was more entranced with hoping to get another glance at Laura Harris.

This film has a great look, steady pacing and solid acting. A big surprise in my eyes. This was a great find and well worth the two quarters I paid for it. I will always have a soft spot in my heart for 90’s horror and The Faculty is helping to keep it that way.

Horror Movie Challenge: Day 22: Best Horror Movie Book (Jaws)

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The 1975 film, Jaws, was based on the book of the same name written by, Peter Benchley. Benchley was brought in to co-write the script for Jaws and was lucky enough to have a few other of his novels made into movies as well. Directed by
Steven Spielberg, this film scared many viewers to the point of never wanting to go in the water again.

It’s widely known that Spielberg was having trouble getting the mechanical shark, Bruce, to work properly. He had wanted too show much more of the shark, but due to all the technical difficulties, he had to limit the shots on the shark. Who knows what the final version of the film would have looked like of how the tone would have felt, but limiting the time the camera spent on Bruce, really helped maintain the suspense and scare factor.

The all around production value found within Jaws is what has helped make it such a huge success. The cinematography is picture perfect and has the classic Spielberg techniques. The acting was well done and the score played a giant part in the films marketing campaign as well as setting the audience up for what was to come.

At the time, Jaws had become the highest grossing film to date. With a budget of just $9 million, the shark tale reeled in over $470 million at the box office and has continued to sell copies on DVD and Blu-Ray yet today.

Horror Movie Challenge: Day 21: Worst Twist Ending (High Tension)

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I love just about everything about High Tension. Strong final girl, superb gore, interesting character, fantastic cinematography, it is nearly the perfect slasher until the final act when the film commits a terrible cinematic crime. That crime is a twist for the sake of a twist. A twist ending that makes no sense that, as Roger Ebert put it, “you could drive a truck through…literally.” It nearly completely ruins everything this film had going for it. I won’t give away the ending but was ANYONE a fan of it?

Horror Movie Challenge: Day 20: Best Twist Ending (Sleepaway Camp)

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The slasher with the best twist ending in the history of umm..ever?! Campy, over-the-top, and lots of fun with a nice little mean streak. Finding out that Angela was the killer was no surprise but finding out that Angela was really Peter certainly was. There was already a boy in Aunt Martha’s house. No need for another one, right? This ending still gives people nightmares. Creepy as hell.

Horror Movie Challenge: Day 18: Movie Others Hate/We Love: Halloween II (2009)

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I know that most horror fans seem to despise this movie but I find it to be a beautiful shot, misunderstood gem of a horror film. I admire Zombie for not doing a straight up remake of the original sequel and I like how you actually are able to see the emotional grief that the first travesty has caused its characters. We are able to see Laurie and Annie as real, flesh and blood characters that are each trying to deal with this travesty the only way that they know how. It’s not a perfect film (the horse imagery is out of place to say the least) but it is an ambitious film and that’s more than you can say about most horror movies today.