Horror Movie Round Up Week Three: October 15th-21st

blair-witchThe Blair Witch Project (1999)

Synopsis:
Found footage of three student filmmakers reveals the strange happenings of their trip into a Maryland forest for the filming of a documentary on the Blair Witch legend.

Review:
Much like last week’s Paranormal Activity, I think this would have been more impactful had I seen it when it first came out. I give it credit for being the first “found footage” film, and for telling a pretty good story. I thought the pacing choices were really interesting, and effective, with so much of the film focusing on the breakdown of the group, and the scary parts only happening at night. I still have an issue with the handheld camera style, and got a little sick while watching it but in this case I absolutely think it adds to the ambiance of the film.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars.

dressed-to-killDressed to Kill (1980)

Synopsis:
A call girl witnesses the murder of another woman, and then becomes entangled in a situation where she is the suspected killer, and is being terrorized and hunted by the real killer.

Review:
Brian De Palma makes strange films that I love. The Untouchables is one of my favorite movies. Dressed to Kill was pretty good. Some of it was a little too much for my tastes but overall I liked the film. I liked the mystery and how it played out. I thought there were enough red herrings to throw you off the scent of the true killer, and that the explanations at the end made sense and didn’t feel like cheats.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars.

prom-nightProm Night (1980)

Synopsis:
Six years after a terrible accident ends in the death a young girl, a killer stalks down the other children, now teenagers going to their high school prom, that were the cause of the accident.

Review:
I thought the setup of the film was pretty good but the whole thing felt really sloppy. During the slasher scenes at Prom, you couldn’t see anything because the lighting was so dark, and there were random disco themes thrown in here and there, like they couldn’t tell if they wanted it to also be a dance film. That would have actually been really interesting, a slasher dance film. I have better hopes for the remake, which is on my list for this season as well.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars.

the-fogThe Fog (1980)

Synopsis:
On the eve of its centennial, a small coastal California town is covered in a dense fog, and bizarre things begin to happen.

Review:
My second Jamie Lee Curtis film of the week was much more satisfying. I thought the creep factor was pretty high in the film, and I liked the basis for the story behind the fog. I also thought the characters were much more likeable and relatable.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.

My Name is Bruce 2006My Name is Bruce (2007)

Synopsis:
Teenagers unwittingly release a Chinese demon on their small Oregon town. The obvious solution is to enlist the help of B-movie star Bruce Campbell.

Review:
Everything about this screams cheese and I loved it. I enjoyed this purely because I’m a fan of Bruce Campbell. I don’t think many people outside of his fan base will get quite as much fun out of it but I laughed a lot.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars.

rosemarys-babyRosemary’s Baby (1968)

Synopsis:
A young couple moves into an apartment next to an odd older couple. Weird things happen and once the young wife becomes pregnant, she begins to suspect that their neighbors are involved in nefarious activities.

Review:
In terms of horror movie length, this one runs a bit long, coming in at just over two hours, however, I did not see this as an issue. I actually liked that the filmmakers took the time to build suspense. I found Mia Farrow charming and sympathetic, and really felt for her as she struggled to understand what was happening to her.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.

re-animatorRe-Animator (1985)

Synopsis:
A new grad student involves his roommate in a strange set of experiments he performs on dead bodies.

Review:
This was such an over-the-top take on a Frankenstein type story, and I thought it was great! I loved the tongue-in-cheek tone, and the overly dramatic acting style. And let’s not forget the special effects which were particularly gory. Also, the music was great though it is almost a direct ripoff of the Psycho soundtrack.

Next week will conclude my Horror Movie a day series. Look forward to reviews of Maggie (2015), The Babadook (2014), and The Mummy (1932).