Check Please! (2017)

Adam and Steve; are sitting in the middle of a café going over their feelings after a blind date, until Steve comes out to Adam and admits something about their hook up the night before. It’s not long until Adam has to deal with the insanity as Steve comes completely clean. I really liked the set up of “Check Please!” as it felt like a comedy skit that thankfully never wore on.

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One Million B.C. (1940) [Blu-Ray]

At one time One Million BC was considered a real hit at the box office and even earned some Academy Award nominations. Today it’s a pretty clunky albeit ambitious movie that predates Roland Emerich’s “10,000 B.C.” by decades where it tells the tale of a group of cavemen and cavewomen with perfect hair and make up, trying to survive in the wastelands. Said wastelands include dogs dressed as elephants, giant badgers fighting giant snakes, and a lot of stunt animals over a flat screen blown up to look like dinosaurs. Saving the effort of claymation and stop motion, the effect is a major dud most times, as the animals never really look all too menacing.

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Ruby (1977) – Special “Elite” Edition [Blu-Ray/DVD]

The cult classic that spawned from the big craze from “The Exorcist” is finally on blu-ray in its original glory, as it was once butchered for television and altered for a wider audience. “Ruby” is a goofy film, albeit one of the most successful independent horror movies of all time, starring Piper Laurie whose undead husband begins haunting the family through her deaf and mute daughter. Despite some really striking scenes of horror, and some fine hammy performances from Laurie and the like, “Ruby” is pretty much a stinker.

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The Old Dark House (1932): Cohen Film Collection [Blu-Ray]

You could almost attribute the invention of the sub-genre involving travelers trapped in a house with a bunch of demented folks to James Whale. While there are no chainsaws or torture devices anywhere, you could see where the seeds were sewn for films like “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” and “The Haunting.” Whale’s film “The Old Dark House” presents glimmers of dark comedy and some pretty funny one-liners but through and through it’s an atmospheric and very creepy tale about a travelers trapped in a house with a psychotic brood. During a horrific rain storm, a group of travelers in the country side of Wales find themselves soaking wet and seeking shelter from the cold water barreling down on them.

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Five Reasons Why “Cloverfield” is still Pretty Fantastic

Yesterday marked the decade anniversary of the release of “Cloverfield.” It was in 2007 that Bad Robot unleashed an amazing and painfully addictive viral campaign for what was essentially a modern giant monster movie. Taking to the internet as the primary tool, fans speculated for over a year what “Cloverfield” was from theories about a Cthulhu apocalypse film to “Voltron,” and fans even created their own monster designs for what the monster would and should logically look like.

There was even a mysterious online game that had zero to do with the movie but capitalized on the mystery, nonetheless. “Cloverfield” ended up being a wonderful film, and the start of an anthology movie series that involved human struggle, a mysterious marketing campaign and a giant behemoth of some kind. With “Cloverfield” now a decade old and two more mysterious movies from the series coming very soon, I look at five reasons why the movie is still so fantastic.

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It Comes At Night (2017)

Trey Edward Shults’ “It Comes At Night” is a great movie, it’s also a poorly marketed movie by a studio that had no idea what to make of it. It’s a masterful dramatic thriller less in the realm of “The Walking Dead” and much more in the realm of “On the Road.” Shults definitely creates a film that focuses on the apocalypse and a family surviving through the apocalypse. But what Shults does is create an enemy that assures an inevitable and unstoppable death at the hands of a miserable disease that is inexplicable and remorseless. When we meet Paul, his wife and son Travis, they’re beginning to set their grandfather free in the woods where they plan to execute and bury him.

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Ice Cream Man (1995): Limited to 2,500 Slipcover Edition [Blu-Ray/DVD]

Full Disclosure: This copy of “Ice Cream Man” was purchased at my own discretion.

One of the last relics of the video store, I vividly recall coming across the cover to “Ice Cream Man” at least a dozen times and wondered what horror Clint Howard would dole up from the back of a truck. Years later, “Ice Cream Man” has caught on as a surreal and self-aware horror thriller that packs in a lot of gore, grue, and goofy black comedy that makes it a collector’s item. From Jan Michael Vincent shooting a bunch of mental patients, to the Ice Cream Man using Ice Cream as a symbol of his sexual repression and rage, to really bad padding to make one of the child actors look heavy, “Ice Cream Man” has earned its status as a cult classic since video stores shut down permanently.

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Chris Claremont’s X-Men (2013)

Available on VOD February 6, 2018

Now with the acquisition of FOX studios by Disney, X-Men is set to have a new renaissance in film and the media and “Chris Claremont’s X-Men” is available to audiences and comic book fans in a brand new feature length edition. Director Patrick Meaney adds over thirty minutes to his biography of Chris Claremont, featuring brand new interviews, extended interviews and even insights in to the franchise. From the comics, to the animated series, and movies, both old and upcoming, we manage to garner some keen and interesting looks in to the mind of Claremont, the man who made the X-Men as we know it.

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