film study

film study: SEQUELITIS – the SAW movies.

Have you ever noticed in movies that when it comes time to write/make a sequel [or six], the films – as a whole – tend to become progressively worse than the one before it? I have. many times. As it turns out, there’s actually a word for that: sequelitis. As described by TVTROPES, sequelitis is when the number of films in a series grows, the higher the probability that the latest entry will be terrible. This makes sense if you think back to older films that had their share of many sequels: such as the Puppet Master films, Friday The 13th, and even A Nightmare On Elm Street – even if that last one and it’s sequels have a special place in my heart. In other words, sequels to movies, generally created on the hopes of box office revenue, are rarely as good as the movie they’re an actual sequel to. If there’s an attempt at a third installment as well, this will also [usually] mark a sharp downhill spike, even if the second movie turned out “all right”. I won’t even get into Direct-To-Video sequels, cause that screams ‘bound to be garbage’ [ahem! Hostel: Part III, cough] Today though, we’re going to be talking about yet another series that although I love[d] them as a whole, they really did get worse as the series went on. If you know me in real life, you’d know that I’m, of course, talking about Saw [and it’s many sequels]

the SAW films: ranked from 'best' to worse' as per Rotten Tomatoes

the SAW films: and their ‘freshness’ as per Rotten Tomatoes


Look at the picture above. Notice how the first Saw film was 48% fresh, but it’s sequel: Saw II,  had a  ‘freshness’ of 36%? That’s almost 10% of a difference already, already showing us that the second film wasn’t as good as the first! [granted, these films aren’t exactly everyone‘s cup of tea] By the time a third SAW film appeared on screen, we’ve dropped yet another 10% in popularity amongst the films. I mean, you’d think that’s where they’d stop..right? Except, this is where it gets kind of tricky though because the series was supposed to end at the third film, which could make sense if you’ve seen the films. But when Lionsgate began to notice just how much money Saw was bringing them in, they demanded that the script to Saw III be changed immensely to allow even more SAW movies to be made.. Obviously, this falls on the fault of “Executive Meddling” – which essentially means that these films started to get worse, because of executive decisions beyond our control.

It’s kind of unfortunate that the Saw films fell into such a death-trap though, [see what I did there?] because I actually enjoyed them – at the very least, for the story of John Kramer and the traps. The Final Chapter, which didn’t feel very “final” at all, ended up with 09% freshness, which is beyond saving.. Even if I have a terrible habit of trying to find something good with every film I watch; that score is fitting. The Final Chapter hurt to watch. [it very well could have been a trap of it’s own]i It didn’t even clear everything up, which it’s promotional teasers claimed it would. [it’s final moments/ending only really made sense if you watched the film with the commentary on]

“well, let’s see: do I want more SAW movies or no? can I think it over first?”

With news and confirmations of an eighth Saw film coming as soon as Halloween 2015, [groan*] I’m both guilty of being excited and overly nervous for what’s to come. With the last film in the series being such garbage, received badly by critics and fans alike, I don’t see why they feel the need to keep pushing with more. If this new sequel is as bad as I’m predicting it will be, I’m hoping Lionsgate comes to realize that more does not always mean better. But now I turn to you readers: how do you feel about the Saw films? Were they masterpieces of horror [I mean, they are the highest grossing horror franchise made] or something that should have ended after part three? Let me know in a comment or two down below.

Also, if you found yourself to enjoy this piece, please take a minute and follow me over on Facebook where you can click the “like” button on my Facebook page. By clicking “like”, you’ll see every post from warrenisweird the very moment it’s been posted. I also share links and pictures that will not be featured here on the blog.  So be sure to tell the horror enthusiast in your life to do the same, and share the page with family and friends!

THANKS FOR READING.

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FILM STUDY: why SCREAM [1996] is an important horror film

Ever since 1996, slasher film maker Wes Craven hasn’t made a movie like Scream. While not all of the movies were perfect, one thing is for certain: the movies certainly did flip the slasher movie genre around its head. Even today, the Scream franchise has had it’s influence on pop culture, and many different horror films. We haven’t seen a new film since Scream 4 which was back in 2011, but it wouldn’t be a surprise if they decided to make a fifth. With MTV announcing that they will be making a TV series based on the films, I decided to re-watch the first in the series, and analyze why it’s such an important film in the horror genre as an whole. I even wrote up a Friday Fun Fact on the movie – which can be read here – because it’s so damn entertaining to watch!

besides the fact that the film is self-aware, Scream had been credited with revitalizing the horror genre in the late 90s by combining a typical slasher film with filled with humor, it’s awareness of horror film clichés and a fairly clever plot! While Scream was one of the highest grossing films of 1996 and became, and remains; the highest grossing slasher film in the world, its success was only matched by Scream 2, which not only broke box-office records at the time but also had some critics argue that it was actually a better film than the original. Unfortunately, Scream 3 ended up being considered worse [by many, including myself] than its predecessors, both critically and financially. Critics even were making comments that it had become the type of horror film Scream was making fun of in the first place.. It did however, receive some positive responses with claims that it was the perfect end to the film trilogy.. at least until Scream 4 came out..

Another important thing to note is that there has been a few films that tried to follow in the footsteps of Scream, including the ever famous I Know What You Did Last Summer [which would make sense, since it’s screenplay was written by the same guy] and surprisingly, Bride Of Chucky [considering it’s poster pretty well ripped off Scream 2, and it’s totally self-aware]

Being as we’re only talking about the first Scream film, one of the bigger twists that we, the viewers, learn was the fact that not only was Billy the killer, but Stu was one as well. [as seen above] This tends to raise question[s] like: who killed whom? Obviously, to make things less suspecting – one would stick around, while the other killed. To clear up confusion for first time viewers, I’ve made a list of the deaths [of characters] and who committed the kill, So hopefully, this helps clear the confusion.. If you don’t remember a name, be sure to click on the name of the individual to see the character in the film. Enjoy:


PHONE CALLS: There are three main phone calls in the film. The first is Casey‘s, the second is Sidney‘s, and the third is the one Sidney gets at Tatum‘s house. In the film, Billy and Stu are using a voice changer to disguise their voice which means it could have been either one of them at any time. But, if you look at the script, there originally was no voice changer. That wasn’t added in until later. In the original script, you find out at the end that it as Stu doing an impression the whole time, which means he did all of the calls. They probably changed it only because they were worried the audience would recognize Matthew Lillard [who played Stu], but that doesn’t change the fact that Kevin, the screenwriter, envisioned Stu making those calls. There’s other evidence, too. The cops checked Billy‘s phone records and found no calls to Casey or Sidney. And if Billy somehow did do the Sidney call, how come the cops couldn’t find a voice changer on him or at the scene? And because he didn’t have said voice changer in jail, he couldn’t have done the call to Tatum‘s house.

STEVE: First, lets get this out of the way. Both killers were there. Some say Stu couldn’t have been there because Tatum says Stu was with her that night, but what about what Randy said? “Was that before or after he SLICED and DICED?” We don’t know how long he was at Tatum‘s, which means Stu could have helped kill Casey and Steve and then went over to Tatum‘s, or he could have went to Tatum‘s first and THEN helped kill Casey and Steve. We already know he made the phone calls, but there’s also the fact that the killer gets around quickly in this scene, which Wes and Kevin explain in the commentary as they were needing more than one killer. So who killed Steve was probably Billy. Stu was on the phone, so Billy probably had more elbow room and free time. Plus, Steve is gutted practically as soon as the killer stops talking, which shows that there wouldn’t be enough time for Stu to make the kill.

CASEY: Kevin Williamson already confirmed on Twitter that it was Stu, and there’s enough evidence to support that., When Casey takes off the killer’s mask before being stabbed, there’s a big dramatic “she knows who it is” moment, and based on the fact that we know Casey used to date Stu. [which would explain why she was targeted in the first place]

SIDNEY’S ATTACK: Again, both were there, while Stu made the call. So who popped out of the closet? Look how fast the killer disappears and Billy appears – it couldn’t have been Billy. It had to be Stu. On a sidenote: Billy dropped the phone on purpose because he wanted to get arrested so the cops could find out he didn’t make the calls and he would be written off as a suspect. It’d also help guilt trip Sidney into sleeping with him. Not to mention, they were planning on killing Sidney on her mother’s anniversary, which wasn’t for another 2 days in-movie.

BATHROOM ATTACK: This one is difficult and also heavily debated. It couldn’t be Stu because Stu was wearing brown pants and the person in the bathroom was wearing dark blue washed jeans. This means it was either Billy or one of the pranksters. First off, when did they get in there? Sidney goes in, goes into the handicap stall, the two cheerleaders come out and leave, then Sidney comes out right after. No interruptions. So the person must have been waiting there the whole time. It raises the question of how could it be Billy when Sidney entered the bathroom in order to get away from him? This makes me believe it was probably one of the two pranksters. The following scene with the reporter seems to hint at this when she says “Many teens have been seen wearing scary masks..”

MR. HIMBRY’S DEATH: with Stu was outside inviting people to his party, Billy was the only one available to be the one killing Himbrey. quick, and easy.

BUSHES AND GROCERY STORE: Some assume this to be another prankster, but a prank usually involves someone popping out and going “BOO!”, so when the person in the bushes and in the grocery store was plainly stalking someone.. That’s not a prank. Therefore, I’d say it’s probably Billy again. Who knows? He was perhaps following Sidney around to see if she still suspected him.

TATUM’S DEATH: Stu was inside entertaining his guests, so it makes you wonder where was Billy? Isn’t it convenient that he doesn’t show up until right after Tatum‘s death? it can be inferred that Stu sent Tatum to get him a beer where Billy was waiting the whole time. They needed her out of the way so Billy could be alone with Sidney. “If Tatum sees you she’ll draw blood”, can also be taken as a dark, but humorous clue.

BILLY’S “DEATH”: Stu: Obviously.

BEHIND RANDY: Some say it’s Billy because actor Skeet Ulrich was the actor in costume while filming the scene, but that’s just because Skeet really wanted to wear it at some point. [whereas Matthew Lillard never got the chance to] This doesn’t mean the character is in costume, or else that’s like saying that Billy and Stu didn’t kill anybody and it was a stuntman the whole time. This makes it seem it was probably Stu. After Sidney got away he came downstairs after her, then that’s when he heard Randy talking to the TV.

KENNY’S DEATH: Probably Stu. It was also the same person that was behind Randy, which can be proven by the editing of the movie.

DEWEY STABBING/COP CAR SCENE: This one is also tricky. Let’s start with the order of events: Stu kills Kenny, Dewey and Gale come back from their walk, Dewey goes into the house, Gale crashes the van, and Dewey comes out of the house with the knife in his back followed by the killer. The stabbing could have been Stu, except for one thing: “I thought you said she was dead”. “She looked dead, man. Still does.” This means that Stu must have checked on Gale, but how could he have done so if he was in the house stabbing Dewey? He probably couldn’t even see the crash from in there, let alone check on her. So there’s the possibility that it was Billy. He heard Dewey calling names, got himself into costume, came down, and then stabbed him in the back. That’s when he saw Sidney, who was clearly terrorized her in the car while Stu was checking on Gale, then disappeared and found a way back upstairs while Randy and Stu were with Sidney. But that raises a question: when did Stu even tell Billy that Gale was dead, and how did he get back upstairs without anyone noticing? The most likely scenario is that the line was added in for a joke but wasn’t really thought out fully. If that’s the case, it was most likely Stu who did the stabbing.


Hopefully, the above list explains things a little better. It’s a complicated film in it’s own right, but it’s also very clever. Although the sequels weren’t all as good – the classic first film is probably my favorite. While I’m still a bigger fan boy of Wes Craven’s original film: A Nightmare On Elm Street, Scream is still just as good, making both cult classics within the horror genre! With the talks of a Scream TV Show, I’m both worried and excited – because now anything is fair game for Ghostface. Now I turn to you, the reader, do you like the SCREAM movies? If so, which sequel is your favorite? Let me know in a comment or two!

Also, if you enjoyed reading this piece, please take a minute and head over to Facebook to click the “like” button on my Facebook page. By clicking “like”, you’ll see every post from warrenisweird the very moment it’s been posted. if that’s not convincing enough, I also share things that will not be featured here on the blog.  So be sure to tell the horror enthusiast in your life to do the same, and share the page with family and friends!

THANKS FOR READING.

FILM STUDY: Let’s talk about KILLER KLOWNS FROM OUTER SPACE

damnkillerklowns

It’s no surprise that I have a little something called coulrophobia. I link it all the way back to my childhood when a clown thought of laughing directly in my face, which turned me right away from the very thought of them. Through the magic world of [horror] film, the fear is still present; what with clowns like Pennywise in Stephen King‘s It being the first that comes to mind. Hell, there was even I time that I wrote about some of the clowns in horror that don’t scare me – back when I first started warrenisweird. [read the whole article] One set of “klowns” on this list were from today’s review: Killer Klowns From Outer Space. [yes, that’s with a “k”] The film, generally speaking, is considered a horror; but it’s fairly campy, and a definite cult-classic. Although the klowns are pretty scary, at least to us with coulrophobia, the cheesiness of the film make the klowns special to me.. both in the way that they are portrayed, and the originality of the film as a whole.

The film opens up during the evening in a small town, [which isn’t named] when suddenly, an alien spaceship – which could have been mistaken for a comet – shoots over the night sky. Enter two of the main characters: Mike and Debbie, who happen to be out on their first date, who decide to go and investigate the “comet” they saw fly over their head! It isn’t until they arrive at what appears to be a circus tent, that they discover the ones that came from outer space and are hiding inside.. And those inside just happen to be aliens.. that look exactly like clowns. These “klowns” have come to Earth to secretly kill humans with their circus-themed weapons; everything from “popcorn guns” to a balloon animal dog [on a leash of course] – to smell out the humans! Mike and Debbie, along with a fellow Police Officer, take it upon themselves to stop these KILLER KLOWNS FROM OUTER SPACE, or we’re all doomed to be killed or worse: eaten!

The really fantastic thing about this movie is how original it is, both in plot and death scenes: as I said above, the klowns use circus-like weapons, such as their popcorn guns, or even throwing pies in the people’s faces! [which actually melt the person in question!] Although, with all their sorts of weapons, my favorite scene still stands with the shadow puppet T-Rex eating the people at the bus stop – both for it’s creativity, and knowing that something so simple and innocent can lead to a movie sequence like no other! [as seen below:]

they just don’t make movies like this anymore..

truth be told, Killer Klowns is a fairly difficult movie to do a review on, mainly because of how special of a film it is: It has an insane cult fan-base, which can be proven by trying to find the movie for sale – without ordering it, a ton of toys based on the film, [which tend to be extremely pricey] and because of this fucking awesome shirt! [writer’s note: my birthday is on the 23rd of this month if anyone wants to order it for me!]

Well, it’s a definite given fact that you’ll be met with blank stares and confusion if you try and explain what this film has to offer to anybody who hasn’t seen it before, so do yourself [and others] a favor: pop yourselves a big bucket of popcorn, grab some cotton candy [though, maybe not the cotton candy from the movie..] and sit your friends all down in front of the TV. From there: just sit back, relax and take in the obscurity that is Killer Klowns From Outer Space!

THANKS FOR READING.

film study: THE LOVED ONES is The PERFECT Valentine’s Movie!

thelovedonesvalentines

High school was[/is] a strange time wasn’t it? I know my time in school was “different” : what with all those teachers, my weird friends and awkward teenage romance. especially that awkward teenage romance.. Have you ever had a crush on someone, who didn’t like you back? That’s where The Loved Ones story begins.

The movie opens on a bright and sunny day, where one grade 12 student’s happy life soon changes.. While attempting to avoid what appears to be a blood soaked person walking in the middle of the road, Brent swerves his car around a tree, which ultimately ends with the accident killing his father. Unfortunately, Brent is constantly confronted by the guilt of his father’s death [and his mother’s emotional collapse] after the accident, so Brent escapes life with drugs and loud metal music to block out the pain and guilt he feels. However, he has one thing holding him to Earth; his girlfriend Holly – a grounded, caring, and loving individual with good looks; a perfect dream date for his high school prom…and then there’s a ‘special’ girl, known as Lola. Lola is quiet and awkward, but seems to actually have feelings for Brent: a lot of feelings. So many in fact, that she asks Brent if she’d go to the prom with her; which he politely turns down. [seeing as he’d be going with Holly] and that – that’s where it everything goes terribly wrong.

As it turns out, Lola is fucking crazy – making Brent the ‘Prom King’ at her own version of the prom, which includes: [but not limited to] a mirrored disco ball, pink satin, glitter, syringes, nails, and even power drills! The worst part is knowing that her father is involved with her torturous ways.. even helping her! Unfortunately, Lola thinks she’s doing something perfectly fine, and you learn that this isn’t the first time she done this – remember when I mentioned the blood soaked individual at the beginning? As it turns out, he was one of Lola‘s [many] “LOVED ONES”. The movie can feel like a slow burner at times, which isn’t a bad thing, but holy crap does it pay off nearing the end! With enough blood/gore to satisfy most horror fans, the quality of this film is insane!

the real problem is how attractive Lola is..

In the end though, I titled The Loved Ones as the perfect Valentine’s Day movie – and this is why: It’s not. In truth, it’s extreme, violent, and definitely a beautifully crafted film. The closest thing that could be considered “loving” about this movie is Lola‘s dedication to Brent and the other men she’s tortured, and ultimately – killed. It’s a wonder that Brent survived at the end, with obvious permanent memories of what he just went through: and Lola, who tries so damn hard to catch up to Brent when he makes his escape..when this happens. [spoilers, obviously]

So be sure to check out The Loved Ones this Valentine’s Day; with it’s slow burning story – which as I said, is not a bad thing – and an attractive [but psychotic] Lola, what could possibly go wrong? Would you go to Prom with her? I mean, if it meant your life..

“Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned”, am I right?

THANKS FOR READING.

[PS: just try to get the song “Am I Not Pretty Enough?” out of your head – I dare you..]

film study: why “LET THE RIGHT ONE IN” is vampires done RIGHT

Contrary to popular belief, not all vampires are over 1000 years old. Sometimes, they’re younger, say about 12.. except they’ve been 12 for a long time! Let The Right One In, or Låt Den Rätte Komma In, is one such story involving one of those 12 year old vampires. The story is about Oskar, a bullied 12 year old, who tends to dream of revenge. [I mean, the first thing you see in the movie is Oskar wearing a mask holding a knife!] Then enters Eli, a strange young girl [who’s roughly Oskar‘s age] and newcomer to the town who moves in with her “Father”, Håkan. [we’ll get to that later on] Oddly enough though, Eli can’t stand the sun or even food, and if she wants to come into a room, she needs to be “invited”. Quite literally in fact, she has to be told that she’s “allowed” to enter the room. Through their friendship, Eli gives Oskar the strength – and the determination – to hit the bullies back, but when he realizes that Eli needs to drink other people’s blood to survive; he’s faced with an almost impossible choice: Just how much can love forgive? Another important thing to note is that Oskar actually collects clippings from newspapers [and magazines] detailing gruesome murders with pictures of various hunting knives. He also hides a fairly large hunting knife under his mattress. [which his Mother is obviously unaware of]

as I said above, Oskar‘s classmates tend to regularly bully him, and he spends his evenings imagining revenge. On the night he meets Eli, who appears to be a pale girl of his age, Oskar learns that Eli has recently moved into the apartment next door to him with Håkan: presumably, her Father. It starts off relatively tame, though Eli initially warns Oskar that they can’t be friends! [talk about harsh! but there’s a reason] But over time, they begin to form a fairly close relationship with one another, with Oskar letting Eli borrow his Rubik’s Cube and the two even learning and exchanging Morse code messages through their adjoining wall. eventually, when Håkan learns of this: he ends up requesting Eli stops seeing Oskar. This is because [SPOILER ALERT!] Håkan is not Eli‘s father: he’s actually the grown up version of a young boy who fell in love with Eli in the past, and because Eli can’t grow up, [with being a vampire and all..] She is technically the girl the young Håkan fell in love with. [if that makes sense] Therefore, he has taken upon himself to take care of Eli [through gathering blood, moving from place to place with her, etc] because he loves her. Thus his reason for wanting Eli to stop seeing Oskar is implied to be pure jealousy!

and if you don’t invite her in: she starts to look like this..

It’s further proven that Håkan is willing to do anything for Eli when he actually stops to kill a [random] passerby on a busy footpath near a main road to harvest fresh blood, but he fails to return with anything  since he is interrupted by an oncoming dog walker. Naturally, a hungry Eli subsequently kills a local man who is making his drunken way home from the bar. Thankfully, Håkan manages to hide the body in a small ice-hole in the local lake, when he plans to make another well-prepared [but pretty badly] executed kill. In this sequence to get blood for Eli, Håkan tries to get the ‘food’ by trapping a teenage boy in a change room. As it turns out though, the boy’s friends are waiting for him, and when he takes forever to get changed, they decide to try to go into the change room to see what’s taking so fucking long! As a final escape tactic, Håkan decides to pour a ton of concentrated hydrochloric acid onto his own face so he can disfigure it to prevent any authorities from figuring out his identity and therefore, track down Eli. He even offers his neck to Eli to feed off of when he comes to accept that she is falling for Oskar, and that he has no place in her heart anymore.. that, and he’s pretty gross looking now after his ‘accident’. Talk about dedication to one person!! Check out Håkan‘s “post-hydrochloric acid” face below!

ugh. hope it was worth it, pal!

Let The Right One In is easily one of the best vampire movies I’ve ever seen: it has heart, it has gore, it has a brilliantly crafted story-line. It’s not so much a horror, when it can even technically fall under a romance story in a way or two! [SPOILER ALERT] the fact that Oskar becomes the “new” Håkan to Eli by the end of the film shows his dedication to the first person who ever made him feel special: I mean, sure, Eli will live on as Oskar grows old – but he seems to accept that, and for the first time in what seems like a long time; Eli doesn’t seem to want to use someone.. she actually seems to care for Oskar. By the end of the movie, Oskar and Eli are on a train, moving away to some new getaway – and I love that. It shows us just how special their connection is: innocent. They go through so much together through-out the film, and the ending is the ultimate pay off.. There’s also a somewhat sub-plot involving Oskar‘s Mother and Father, and the fact that they’re separated but, it’s nothing super important.. But the next time you meet someone new, and they live in a boarded up apartment, and you realize they only really come out in the dark: be careful, It could very well be Eli and Oskar living next door! If you want to get technical, it’s never really said where they end up?

THANKS FOR READING.

[fun fact: in the very last scene, Oskar is seen traveling on a train with Eli, who is in a box beside him: safe from the sunlight. From inside this box, Eli taps the word “kiss” to Oskar in Morse code. When Oskar is seen tapping back, he taps the word”puss“: which translates roughly to “small kiss” in Swedish, the movie’s language]

film study: your NEW favorite Christmas film that you’ve NEVER heard of — Treevenge

With Christmas creeping in closer [and closer] everyday, I tried to find a film that had kept with the horror aspect, as well as keep the Holiday Spirit intact. With that, I present my [newest] favorite Christmas film: Treevenge. In this classic Holiday film, we meet foul-mouthed lumberjacks who come upon a hillside of trees, and proceed with cutting them down and bringing them to Christmas tree lots where families take their pick of the group, take it home, stick it in a tree-stand, and decorate it.. like most people do during the Christmas holiday, right? However, these “trees” are not like most trees, they’re sentient – and find themselves experiencing terror and fear during this;  so much, that we actually can hear their screams of pain when chopped and/or sawed on. The trees feel the emotion of separation from their family and friends, they fear the unknown, and most of all – the despair they feel during the strange and bizarre rituals of families at Christmas. But these trees have a plan: on Christmas morning, the trees will strike back. Every Man, woman and child [sometimes, even pets] may be in for a grisly end!

Treevenge is a short which clocks in at around 16 minutes from 2008, produced by Yer Dead Productions, who are more famously known for being the company behind the “Slumber Party Alien Abduction” segment from V/H/S/2 and even Hobo With A Shotgun! But before you jump at me and say this film sounds ridiculous, think about it for a minute: this is actuallyreally cool concept, with the trees being the primary “evil” rather than a typical human killer. The film is gruesome at best, and hilariously entertaining to watch.

treevenge-horror.jpg

The film is still playing at festivals around the globe, and chopping fans down the fans everywhere, even though the movie is over 5 years old! In fact, amongst the very stiff competition, Treevenge got an honorable mention at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival. [hey, somethings better than nothing at all, right?] Rue Morgue Magazine even awarded the creators with “best short horror film” back in 2009! But don’t let me tell you how good Treevenge is, let the film itself do the work. Because, as it turns out — the film in it’s entirety is on youtube, and because it’s the season of giving, I’m going to share this gem with each and every one of you. Just be careful when decorating your tree this year, because eventually, even trees have had enough, and one branch — just might snap when you least expect it..

THANKS FOR READING.

film study: let’s talk about Halloween III: Season Of The Witch

whether you like this movie or not, Halloween III: Season Of The Witch definitely has it’s fan base. It wasn’t your typical Halloween sequel but it was labelled as one. it didn’t even have Michael Myers.. instead, we got a mask-making company as a villain who has the plan to kill millions of American children with something sinister [I prefer the term: “special”] hidden within their Halloween masks. I mean, what the fuck? that doesn’t sound right? So, as I sit here typing this; drinking my pumpkin spice latte, [hey now! it’s Halloween, I’m allowed officially now] I can’t help but be curious why it’s so different than the other Halloween films! Which is what we’re going to find out in this post – starting now.

it’s important to know that [as I’ve already mentioned] there’s no signs of Michael Myers anywhere in the film. [he’s not even mentioned by name] However, there’s a reason for this: [deep breath~] as a whole, Halloween was originally supposed to be an anthology series – meaning that each with each Halloween film, a different horror story would be made. As it turns out though, the first film proved to be a huge success and as a character, Michael Myers became the next big thing in horror! [sitting along side with Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees] The production team decided that due to his popularity, they should do a follow up of his story with Halloween II, in which Michael was supposed to die at the end. [but we all know what happens with popular horror icons. cough~ Jason!] Naturally, when Season Of The Witch rolled around, audiences were offended that the iconic Halloween villain was left out. From that point, Halloween became a series only about Michael, which he came back in time for Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers [just in time to make it seem like he was never gone from the series as a whole.] if you really want to push the envelope though, Halloween: The Curse Of Michael Myers tried to add a connection to this film, since Curse Of Michael Myers had a pagan cultist in the film named “Mrs Blankinship“. In Season Of The Witch, the main villain at one point refers to having an appointment with a certain Mrs Blankinship. [coincidence? I didn’t think so]

I kinda want the skull one..minus the death that comes with it.

Going back to Season Of The Witch, [which was the point of this post] it’s actually quite a shocking film: with violence, gore, all happening mainly to kids! It’s mind numbing-ly creepy to know that there’s a company [in a film] known as Silver Shamrock who overly advertise these “special” masks: which come in the forms of Jack-o’Lantern, Skull, and Witch. therefore, children really want these masksonly to get killed by them. I mean, I understand it’s a horror film, but fuck that’s dark.. It isn’t your standard movie death either, [it’s not like you just wear the mask, and then fall over dead] sometimes it involves insects/snakes – crawling out of your skull! [curious to see? see it in GIF form here! not for the squeamish] If that GIF wasn’t enough, sometimes; this happens too – so be careful out there! [did I mention that Halloween III is fairly obscure?]

HALLOWEEN III even has itself a cool poster!

Halloween III: Season Of The Witch is a strange sequel, [as far as sequels go] it doesn’t have everyone’s favorite silent killer. It’s titled Season Of The Witch, but features no witch, but instead a mask company. However, this shouldn’t stop you from seeing it – it’s still a great film, but definitely isn’t for everyone. [some may find it strange, especially for a Halloween film] If you aren’t busy tonight [October 31st, 2014] it’s actually going to be playing on AMC at 7:00pm so I’d say hit it up if given the chance! Also, I’ve included the original 1982 trailer for the film below, so click the play button, and prepare for a really tripped out looking Halloween film!

Lastly, be sure to find me on Facebook as well and give that “like” button a hit! I’d really appreciate it! [we’re getting closer to 100 likes everyday!]

THANKS FOR READING.

film study: was I the ONLY one who liked “Sinister”?

20141010-091147.jpg I remember when I saw the trailer for Sinister: I was annoyed to all hell that there was another haunting movie coming out. To make it feel worse than I already thought possible, it was produced by the guys that did Paranormal Activity — which I already felt were boring films to begin. [although, the first one was good, for what it was anyway..] Eventually Sinister went to theatres and I just let it slip by, I had absolutely no desire to watch it. Until my birthday later the following year. It’s common knowledge that 90% of the gifts I get during my birthday/Christmas are movies and/or horror memorabilia. One such film I got was Sinister from my father. [be aware, that my father fucking loves the Paranormal Activity/haunting films] I groaned, but it’s a horror film. Finally, Steph and I watched it, and was it not what I expected. [my FULL review of the film should be over on my Letterboxd account] 20141010-093329.jpg I was shocked by the fact that I was actually enjoying this movie, the camera angles, the creepy Buhguul, even the idea of kids killing their families? Although overdone, it felt unsettling; especially with each 8mm tape playing a more disturbed clip [someone even gets run over with a lawnmower in one!] I couldn’t wait to tell everyone about Sinister, and about how wrong I was about it!

Except people already knew; but the twist was that they disagreed with me. I remember when I worked at the theatre and people would come out complain about how “uneventful” the film felt, and the film wasn’t scary like it was told to be. Maybe these were just a few people, but even on my TV screen, it felt fucking insane! Maybe I just need to re-watch it. I know it’s up for a sequel so it couldn’t have been that bad, right? I mean, there has to be a sequel, the tapes were still in the attic by the end credits.. weren’t they?

kids are fucking creepy, am I right?

Ultimately, Sinister was not that bad of a film — I won’t go so far as to say it was the best movie of it’s year, but for a “haunting” film, it was fairly decent. [even iMDB gave it a 6.8/10, so that’s good..right?] Now I turn to you, the readers. Did you see Sinister? Was it really as bad as people thought? Or was it nail bitingly creepy? Lemme know in a comment, or even on Facebook here.

THANKS FOR READING.

film study: how I came to enjoy “Cabin In The Woods”

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I wish I could say otherwise, but when I first watched the movie Cabin In The Woods, I did not enjoy it at all. I felt that it was filled with annoying characters, that it was clearly a blatant rip off of multiple films, and worst of all — I felt there was too much happening at once. I never realized that all this confusion and strangeness in a film would become one of my favorite modern horror of the past 10 years.

For starters, what exactly is the movie Cabin In The Woods? besides being a horror movie with nearly every monster imaginable, [and then some] it also has a deeper link to it — “older than the world gods” who want to destroy everyone on the planet — as they’ve been laid dormant for thousands of years.. due to human sacrifice. Which is where this almost ‘government’ comes in. It turns out, that they are around to appease these gods, and have tabs on everyone in the cabin; ‘helping’ them undo themselves. Each generation of new sacrifices have to fill five certain roles:

The Jock, The Scholar, The Whore, The Virgin and The Fool.

It’s also worth mentioning that my thought of “blatant rip off” was actually something Cabin did intentionally as almost homages to other films [we’ll return to this in a bit] — making me wonder if they’re going the route of using the idea that all other horror movies are “payment” or “sacrifice” to these gods? Kind of like how Behind The Mask had the idea of Freddy, Jason & Michael Myers all being real serial killers. [at least in the film’s world]

Going back to the homages in the film, people that have seen this movie will know exactly what I’m thinking of — the infamous white board. According to the film, in the basement of the Cabin are a bunch of little trinkets: each representing a different monster. The idea is each of the 5 “sacrifices” is to “choose their demise”. The office group [which I’ve been referring to as “the almost government” this whole time] has a white board where they actually gamble on which mythical beasts are going to be chosen by the teenagers — as seen below.

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Looking at this board, we can see a fuck ton of familiar terms such as: Deadites, Kevin, The Bride and even an “Angry Molesting Tree”! [just to name a few] the best part of this white board is knowing that these aren’t even all the monsters in the film — just enough here to get you all excited. To add to the insanity of all this, we even get to see most, if not all, of the monsters during what can only be describes as “messy”: the elevator scene.

If you were to look this scene up on YouTube – assuming you haven’t already seen the movie – chances are you’d probably do what I did when I first saw it: stare in a amazement. The amount of effort in this film, to get so many different types of monsters in mind-blowing![very little CGI makes me a happy camper! see what I did there? even the merman/werewolf were people in costumes!]

It really did take a bit of warming up to liking Cabin In The Woods but as I said at the start of this post, at first I was not a fan at all. I couldn’t get over how “different” it was than classic horror films — however, after a few more viewings and reading fan-explanations; it’s become a personal favorite film of mine! I could watch it a zillion times and still notice something new every time.

Also, on a somewhat quick side note [completely unrelated] if you read my movie reviews over here, I realize it’s been a long time since I wrote one.. [last movie I reviewed over there was “Amazing Spider-Man 2” I think] it’s the same as before, I’ve been busy working/writing here but new movie reviews are on the way; I promise!!

THANKS FOR READING.

film study: who did it better? — HATCHET [2006] vs MIRRORS [2008]

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Whether it’s about movies, sports, video games or pretty well anything, everyone has their own opinion on something; the only question is who agrees with them on that opinion. As always, we’re talking movies on warrenisweird but today is something I found a little special: in both the movies Hatchet and Mirrors there is a ‘jaw ripping’ death scene. While both are grotesque, [and fairly gory!] they both have their own “goods and bads” to them. in this edition of “who did it better?” we’re going to compare both scenes and I’ll give my final opinion of which one I personally prefer.. though my answer may be obvious! [also, if you like this idea of “who did it better?” posts, let me know in a comment! they could become a regular thing!] due to the nature of the topic at hand, spoilers are strongly implied.. so if you intend to see these movies, and haven’t yet — click away from this post. If you’re good for spoilers, let’s begin with the scenes!

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Let’s start with Mirrors — as seen above. The film [which happens to be a remake of the classic Korean film “Into The Mirror“] follows an ex-cop [now working as a security guard] who becomes the target of an evil force that uses mirrors as a way to kill people. The scene in question happens when the ‘mirror demons’ get to the main character’s sister, who happens to get attacked [in this such way] while preparing to bathe. The ‘jaw rip’ is grotesque, bloody as hell, and somewhat terrifying in the sense of the shaking camera, invoking her pain — making the scene seem almost more gritty, and raw. I enjoyed Mirrors as a whole [I enjoyed it a lot more than most critics did anyway] this scene, in my opinion, was certainly a high point for us gore-hounds.

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Now let’s switch to a film I know 100% more about: [and strongly recommend if you haven’t seen it already] Hatchet. this film follows a group of tourists that go on a New Orleans Swamp Tour, only to find out that the “ghost” from the ghost stories being told isn’t just a fairytale. This particular ‘jaw rip’ scene blew my mind when I first saw it on screen, it’s all done practically, [no CGI!] and you almost feel the pain — if only for a second — when the woman gets her mouth ripped open! What makes this scene so intense is the fact that the rip feels so real, and has an almost over-the-top feel to it; yet it just works so nicely, especially for the kind of film Hatchet [and it’s two sequels] becomes.


Both Hatchet and Mirrors were good films. they had their ups and downs but obviously I came into this post with my answer already set in stone: my personal favorite ‘jaw rip’ goes [easily] to Hatchet. It just has a better look to it, and it’s lack of CGI, which Mirrors had a lot of, [especially in the jaw rip scene..]just cemented my decision further. But that doesn’t mean that Mirrors was that bad of a film: it is still enjoyable, and sits on my DVD shelf along with Hatchet!

So which “jaw rip” did you enjoy most? the gritty and dirty realistic feeling Hatchet? or was it almost seeing Amy Smart naked in Mirrors rip her mouth open? [so close, yet so fucking far..] Let me know in a comment or two! Also, once again — if you enjoyed this comparison, let me know! If it becomes popular enough, maybe this will become a thing that happens more often!! [and if so, what scenes should I compare next?]

THANKS FOR READING.