Category Archives: Reviews

Awkward – JAWS THE REVENGE Birthday Invite

jaws-party-hat

It’s been a while..

Next year – July 17 2017 to be exact – it will be the turn of Jaws The Revenge to celebrate it’s 30th birthday. It’s the last chance you have to wish a movie from the Jaws franchise many happy returns. I have a sneaky suspicion that Universal Studios won’t join in the celebrations by releasing a ‘This Time It’s Platinum – Edition’ Blu-ray, neither will TCM’s Robert Osborne deliver a gushing 15-minute monologue praising the film’s nautical nuances. No. It’ll just be us Jaws The Revenge (JTR from here on in) fans sitting on the couch with a bottle of pre-mix Pina Colada in one hand and a Tuna Hoagie in the other. Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Netfixed: The Retreat (2011)

The Retreat 2011

The Retreat poses an ever growing and important question to fans of genre cinema; Are you happy to see well made versions of the exact same movie in different surrounds or are you willing to accept new and unfamiliar approaches to the path well trodden? The Retreat is a lovingly crafted, beautifully shot, and excellently acted piece of British genre cinema. Director Carl Tibbetts and his cinematographer Chris Seager present a fantastically photographed piece, showing off the beauty of the Scottish Outer Hebrides (plate shots) and Gwynedd Wales (the majority of the movie) in a glossy blue/grey palette. Actors Thandie Newton, Cillian Murphy, and Jamie Bell all deliver astute performances in their native accents. So what’s the problem you miserable bastard? Continue reading

Tagged , , , ,

Net-Fixed: Scenic Route (2013)

Netfix 1

Every week Deadly Movies will trawl through the titles available to stream on Netflix to weed out the good from the bad. As you may have noticed the majority of horror, sci-fi, and monster movies on Netflix suffer from that all too familiar disease of the 3 star rating. Meaning that a) our expectations of the genre are so low we rate everything as ‘OK‘ or b) there’s some genuine hidden gems out there that are underrated by the masses. Or of course, both. So let’s get crackalackin with 2013’s Scenic Route. Continue reading

Tagged , , , ,

Deadly Movies Best Horror of 2013

best of 2013

2013 hasn’t really been a banner year for horror. You get the feeling that horror cinema is in a real transitional stage. We’re certainly over the remake hump that dominated the 2000s and therein studio horror output has slowed dramatically. The void hasn’t quite been filled by the Indie scene, which too often continues to rely on tried and tested genre blueprints. Paranormal activities continue to rule at the box-office with hauntings, possessions, and exorcisms dominant with the popular audience. So what of the best of the year? Here’s what tickled my wobbly bits over the past 12 months: Continue reading

Tagged , , ,

Evil Dead 2013: At times insatiable and inconsistent, irritating and wonderfully icky

Evil-Dead-Remake

It’s hard to  know what to expect from the Evil Dead remake: Homage? Remake? New take? Sequel? The answer is a bit of all and not enough of one. Like many a contemporary remake Evil Dead doesn’t quite have the conviction to play its own hand (but plenty of conviction to sever two). That doesn’t, however, mean that there isn’t plenty to enjoy and even marvel. Some spoilers ahead. Continue reading

Tagged , , , ,

Deadly Movies Best Films of 2012

Best of 2012

2012 was a fairly healthy year for horror. New horror filmmakers are starting to break through, the decade of remake-horror is slowly dying off, and there’s an emphasis on new approaches to treasured sub-genre favourites. So walk with me dear friends through ten films that tantalised Deadly Movies taste buds in 2012 (note the following films are ones which saw their wider release date in 2012):  Continue reading

Tagged , , ,

A Collection of non Spoiler 5 Star Reviews of The Dark Knight Rises

Embargo lifted! As of today top critics have been permitted to publish their reviews of Chris Nolan’s final slice of Bat-pie ‘The Dark Knight Rises‘. The reaction has been one of unanimous plaudits on the scale, tone, emotional gravitas, cinematography, and practical action on a scale seldom seen since the silent era of Hollywood. Below you can read non-spoiler summaries from the likes of Variety, Rolling Stone, Time, The Guardian, IGN, Hollywood Reported, Empire, and Total Film. It would seem Nolan has managed to shake the part 3 hoodoo which has haunted so many trilogy directors and delivered something truly memorable which some early reviews are placing above both The Dark Knight (2008) and The Avengers (2012).., which is actually a monster achievement. Read and enjoy. Deadly Movies will be seeing The Dark Knight Rises on Thursday, a review will of course follow! Continue reading

Tagged , , ,

Deadly Movies Has Seen Prometheus. Non Spoiler Review

Prometheus is certainly a film that leaves you pondering many a complex question when you leave the theatre; questions that will puzzle your puzzler for days after. Sadly there are as many questions to ask about gaping plot holes and character motives as there are questions posed by the film’s grandiose exploration of creationism and the meaning of life. Reader Note: this is spoiler free review in terms of plot points, but those wanting to stay completely spoiler free should NOT read on.  Continue reading

Tagged , , , , ,

Bromance vs Nature: Deadly Movies reviews ‘The Grey’ (2011)

I adore man vs nature movies, I have done ever since I saw Leslie Nielsen bare-chest wrestling a bear in Day of the Animals (1977). The thought of seeing Liam Neeson (who’s really carved out a surprising career as a tough guy in the past decade) fighting wolves in the Alaskan wilderness was an easy sell. But whilst The Grey certainly delivers on man vs nature genre conventions It’s also trying to be something a lot more. Director and writer Joe Carnahan wants to take us on a brutal journey that is as much about survival, masculinity (aka some serious bromance), and loss as it is about running from rampant wolves. And It’s not just the narrative that’s a surprise, Carnahan really slaps you in the face from the get-go with a tone and visual style which is not at all symptomatic of genre movies. The Grey feels more like a hard hitting gritty drama which, has way more in common with Carnahan’s Narc (2002) than it does his A-Team (2010). There’s certainly some wonderful snow filled cinematography, but on the whole Carnahan keeps things handheld and frantic. Continue reading

Tagged , , , ,

The Thing (prequel): Perfectly complimentary to the John Carpenter classic

Deadly Movies Reviews | The Thing (2011)

Who Goes There‘ the 1938 novella by John W Campbell Jr has a had a huge impact on horror movie history, inspiring the likes of ‘Alien‘ and being directly interpreted in ‘The Thing: From Another World‘ (1951) and It’s 1982 remake John Carpenter’s ‘The Thing‘. Dutch director Matthijs van Heijningen Jr adds his 2011 interpretation, but be under no illusion, this is an unashamed prequel (and love letter) to Carpenter’s movie. Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , ,

Captain America and The Raiders of the Lost Adventure Movie

Deadly Movies Reviews | Captain America (2011)

Chris Evans in 'Captain America' (2011)

It’s taken Marvel a long time to finally play one of their trump cards in Captain America, the man who is arguably their figurehead, their front-man, their DC’s Superman. His appearance on-screen now is a carefully planned event, here to really ramp-up the road to 2012s all-star Avengers movie. But marketing and scheduling aside, he’s also a hard sell. For one he seems a little old-fashioned for contemporary cinema, a product of American WW2 propaganda who’s patriotic name, outfit, and shield seem a little cheesy when compared to the rough and ready heros that thrive at today’s box-office. Then you have the undeniably sticky political headache for the studio of producing something so irrevocably pro-American in a decade where Americas foreign policy is making more enemies  than friends abroad. Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , ,

JJ Abrams revisits the lost world of Spielberg land

Deadly Movies Reviews | ‘Super 8’ (2011)

Super 8

A lot has been made about ‘Super 8‘ being a return to the very best sci-fi adventure of Steven Spielberg, here producing on behalf of writer, director JJ Abrams. Much like his producer role in Tobe Hooper’s ‘Poltergeist‘ (1982), Spielberg’s fingerprints are all over ‘Super 8‘, however, under the expert direction of Abrams this film takes it’s cue from the very best of Spielberg without giving overall control to Hollywood’s most powerful gray-beard. Comparisons are fitting, set in 1979, ‘Super 8’ takes place in a world and time inhabited by the likes of ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind‘ (1977) and ‘E.T‘ (1982), and like those films it strikes the balance of sci-fi fantasy and the lives of it’s characters perfectly. Something arguably lost on Spielberg’s adventure films of the last decade.

The characters in ‘Super 8‘ are a group of 13 year old kids, hellbent on making a zombie movie for a local 8mm film contest while all around them even more fantastical real events unfold. When a US Airforce freight train is derailed outside a small industrial US town the alien cargo aboard escapes into the countryside, leaving the young amateur filmmakers the only witnesses to the crash and top-secret fugitive. The military are, of course, determined to recapture the creature by any deceitful, undercover, and underhanded means necessary.., leaving the kids and the local law enforcement to put the pieces of the puzzle together as the unusual events, tension and mystery  in the small town reaches breaking point. Abrams cleverly ensures that the monster and the adults play supporting roles to the kids. This isn’t a movie about a marauding killer creature, but how a group of children get on with their lives surrounded by this very surreal problem as well as their own, all to real, life problems. And this is where ‘Super 8‘ steps up from being a very good adventure film to being a fantastic five-star movie.

Each child actor turns in a wonderful performance (especially the two leads, Joel Courtney and Elle Fanning) that keeps the movie grounded and identifiable in the same way that young actors from bygone adventure movies of the 70s and 80s achieved so memorably. The kids here are the Goonies, they are Billy and Kate from ‘Gremlins‘, they are Marty McFly from ‘Back to the Future‘. That’s not to say that they are parody’s of these characters, but rather they share the same endearing qualities that allow kids to be in real peril, embody roles that aren’t horribly patronising or cliched, and, most importantly, are enjoyable and identifiable for young and adult audiences alike. This is an accolade that can be scarcely said about likewise movies of the past 20 years.

Like the very best of the Spielberg of yesteryear, this is an amazingly fun, moving (in all the right places), and exciting sci-fi movie. Yet this is an Abrams movie. Fans will recognise his specific signature all over the film, yet it goes without saying that his hat is firmly tipped towards the most successful director of modern cinema. I must admit, I’m not sure Spielberg could make this movie today, I don’t think he could ground the sci-fi elements in the everyday like he so successfully did in the past. Props then to Abrams for delivering a film that must be the best of it’s kind since his mentor brought dinosaurs so vividly back to life in 1993.

PS: Hang around for the end credits if you’d like to see the zombie movie. You won’t be disappointed.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Don’t Fuck with the Artist Formerly Known as Anonymous Owl Head

Deadly Movies Reviews | ‘Stage Fright’ (1987)

The artist formerly known as Owl Head

It was a wet evening. In both the movie and my life. Time for me to rent an obscure 80s horror flick to whittle by the wet evening hours. ‘Stage Fright‘ is a movie I’ve had my eye on for a while. Another 80s situation slasher. If you love slasher movies then you thrive on the variables, because the actual plot, outcome, and characterisation vary little, if at all, between movies. Two of the most common variables in slasher movies are situation and killer, both of which became more inventive and convoluted as the 80s progressed. ‘Stage Fright‘ provided curious intrigue to both. Situation: A theatre production. Killer: An escaped asylum patient wearing a ginormous owl head. Yes owl head. Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,
%d bloggers like this: