Eaten Alive is a raw and violent romp in the swamp, but it fails to stick its landing the same way The Texas Chain Saw Massacre does. (While it's never been my favorite, Chain Saw did a lot of things right.) I showed up thinking it would be a gator flick and instead it's about a bunch of rapists in the bayou... Seeing as this is the fourth of his films I can remember watching, it might be time to conclude that I'm just not a Tobe Hooper guy.
This year there've been more than a few noteworthy additions to the list of "classic" horror films I've checked off my "to watch" list: Night of the Living Dead, Black Christmas, Rosemary's Baby, Phantasm, Suspiria... the list doesn't stop there. Despite my general lack of disinterest in Stephen King adaptations, Carrie contends for my favorite among the bunch.
This is more of a body modification drama than anything, though it is certainly one which dabbles in horror along the way. That aside, I was a little turned off by the lack of plot of and suspense, which left it feeling like it dragged on a bit too long for its own good. American Mary peaks with its surgical scenes, which are really well done, though I still feel a stronger affinity toward Excision, in terms of similarly-themed movies I've watched in the last several months.
Maniac straddles a line between slasher and exploitation for the entirety of its screen time. Set within the grimy cityscape of ‘70s New York, it bears thematic relation to Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, though it also possesses a uniquely different space, serving less as a voyeuristic guide to psychopathic mayhem, instead twisting more into the absurd delusions of the killer’s mind as the movie progresses. Crudely shot and thoroughly raw throughout, there are still standout scenes including the shotgun murder (whoa!), but while the whole of the film is meant to find validation in its finale, the realistic element of misogyny that is woven throughout leaves the whole thing feeling repulsive.
Had to watch this for a group project for an ethics class I'm taking. A few weeks ago I was reprimanded by the professor of this course for using the phrase "had her ass kicked" in a sentence. She told me to watch my language, because "ass," I guess. This movie was one of the recommendations that same professor gave us to choose from. It repeatedly features the word "cunt." What an asshole. (Also, how much of a shit show is this script that Annette Bening acting her derriere off and Gwenyth in cornrows can't save it from vomiting all over itself?)
Published October 20, 2019
Appetizing as watching one of the lowest rated horror films on Letterboxd might be, it turns out I didn't have the stomach for Hobgoblins, after all, and chose to watch the MST3K version instead. That did nothing to help matters. I'm not one to gloss over how poorly executed something like Troll 2 is, but at least there was a vague sense of heart to that movie. Even watching this through a lens of irony, there was nothing here for me.
Published October 15, 2019
In service of landing the Gingerdead Man anything remotely resembling a proud legacy, the staff in charge of its production would have been well served to install absurd Gary Busey-inspired horse teeth in the cookie killer's mouth. Instead, the half-baked villain is barely recognizable as the character we see on the film's advertising, compounded further by an underwhelming cast (featuring actors such as "That one lady who looks kind of like Alyssa Milano when you're squinting" and "John Cena and Ryan Lochte's eye-brow pierced love child") in a movie that only registers as a feature film due to its incredibly drawn out opening credits.
I can overlook the gingerbread-inspired spoof of Joan Jett's "Bad Reputation" used as the opening and closing theme for the movie. And I'd be lying if I said I didn't guffaw at some of Gingerdead Man 2's quippy one-liners ("You're making my loaf rise"). But I could do nothing but shake my head shame when the Gingerdead Man was adorned with a crown of thorns and crucified on a miniature cross by an animatronic dildo. Even the most dedicated horror fans have their breaking point.