Danny Boyle’s “28 Days Later” was a big horror film that made a boom when it appeared in the states, so a sequel was a no brainer. As with most genre efforts, with a sequel you have to go bigger, louder, and faster. While I miss “28 Days Later’s” more subtle, quiet, and somber meditation on the end of the world, and a rapid fire virus, “28 Weeks Later” has its strong points. It’s a solid follow up with some very good ideas in its corner, it just fails in some elements, especially in how it breaks the rules of its own villainous disease.
It wasn’t until 2003 where I was truly introduced to Danny Boyle (I’d seen Shallow Grave in 1994, and admittedly greeted it with a very negative reaction. Hell I was eleven). I fondly recall going to the movies that spring and experience a teaser trailer to Danny Boyle and Alex Garland’s “28 Days Later.” The trailer, like the film, was frantic and horrifying and it piqued my interest to where it was all I thought about for months. In the summer of 2003, I managed to see “28 Days Later” finally. It happened to be an even more interesting experience than I ever imagined because I’d seen it a week before I had to have mandatory open heart surgery. To say that I was in a rollercoaster of emotions while watching “28 Days Later” is an understatement of the highest degree.
Eli Roth has always been a better horror fan and film lover than actual filmmaker, and he’s proven it time and time again. After the embarrassing bomb that was “Death Wish,” I had hope that “The House with a Clock in Its Walls” would be a win and Roth would kind of re-invent himself. While not as awful as “Death Wish,” Roth proves once again he’s not too good at handling tone, pacing, and general direction. Without the thick icing of blood, grue, and torture to cover up the thinly layered cake that is “The House with a Clock in Its Walls,” Roth once again proves he’s a filmmaker that has so much to learn, and so much evolving to do.
Somehow in the age of studios reviving remnants of the eighties and destroying them with convoluted mythology and narratives, “Predator” has been somewhat spared. Sure, it was involved with the “Alien” series for a bit, but it’s primarily stayed simplistic and true to the original film–unlike the “Terminator” and “Alien” movie series. “The Predator” is a movie that will likely divide fans of the original film and series as a whole; it’s filled with a ton of plot, an array of characters and is somewhat the antithesis of the original film’s more straight forward machismo based narrative. It also dares to expand on the mythos, should Shane Black be given another shot with a sequel.
It’s never been more popular than to be an anime fan, as now it’s been widely accepted and has become pretty much a mainstream fixture. What was once a niche genre on the fringes, is now something everyone can get in on. Whether it’s PG rated fun, or more complex adult entertainment, it’s there for the taking. Mill Creek repackages some of their anime titles from Sony’s library from 2012 for a 3 DVD series collection of some of the more notable anime series to come out of the gates.
Technology has taken over most aspects of life with human function seemingly being the last realm it needs for full assimilation. After an attack, Grey Trace finds himself widowed and quadriplegic. In order to find how did this to his wife and himself, he is willing to go to great lengths and risks.
Some horror movie premises are just ripe for comedy gold. Cockneys vs. Zombies, strippers vs. zombies, Brits vs. Zombies, et al, but “Ahockalypse” which pits hockey players against a zombie apocalypse is a swing and a miss. It’s not a complete miss overall, but in the end there was just so much that could have been done with the premise. The hockey themed horror comedy’s lack of budget is one of the elements that hinder an otherwise clever idea, as well as a clear lack of tonal consistency through and through.
“The Tingler” is one of my first introductions to William Castle and the art of his theatricality when it came to horror movies and making them an experience. As a kid, “The Tingler” and “House on Haunted Hill” were constant rotation at my home, and I loved how Castle’s films sucked you in. To this day I remember being very riveted in the brief moment during “The Tingler” where the movie breaks the fourth wall asking you, the audience, to scream loudly to avoid being attacked by—dramatic pause—the Tingler!