Movie Reviews 101 Midnight Halloween Horror Franchise – Tremors 5 Bloodlines (2015)

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Plot: The giant, man-eating Graboids are back and even deadlier than before, terrorizing the inhabitants of a South African wildlife reserve as they attack from below-and above.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: The Best of the Sequels


Story: Tremors 5: Bloodlines starts as we see Burt Gummer (Gross) is the host of his own survivalist show when he gets a brand new cameraman Travis (Kennedy) who wants to turn Burt into a bigger brand. When Erich Van Wyk (Janks) approaches Burt about sightings of ass blasters in South Africa.

Arriving in Africa the pair team up with Johan Dreyer (Auret) a man who has come into contact with one of the creatures. We learn Dr Nandi Montabu (Thusi) is looking after the park but once Burt sees the what they are up against being something bigger than ever seen before.

Tremors 5: Bloodlines brings us Burt back for the first time in 11 years and back to the character we love, he has taken the natural evolution with the entry into reality like show which his celebrity status would make happen. Taking the action to Africa has the ups and downs because Perfection is the iconic setting but Africa offers more threats in the open world, it also gives us a chance to enter into the spiritual side of the creatures. Having yet another evolution of the creatures also works and this time I feel we get the first feeling of actual terror being used in the franchise.


Actor Review


Michael Gross: Burt now has his own television show on survival finds himself wanted by the African wildlife to deal with their own graboid problem. When in Africa he finds himself fighting a new breed of creature deadlier than before but even worse for him he faces up against his first true human enemy. Michael is good in this role being the character you would expect at the older age.

Jamie Kennedy: Travis is the new cameraman assigned to Burt, he is very cocky and experienced in the world. His style clashes with Burt which is again designed to create some comic relief through the film. Jamie is good in the serious role but in the comedy side of the falls short.

Pearl Thusi: Dr Nandi Montabu is the vet running the area where the graboids are attacking, she is loyal to her wildlife and has a daughter in this world. She has to fight to save her own town. Pearl is good in this role but we barely see her with Burt in the battle.

Brandon Auret: Johan is the local hunter that joins Burt in his hunting trips, he is very loud and full of himself which will put himself in danger. Brandon does make for a funny character without being used well enough.

Support Cast: Tremors 5: Bloodlines has a good supporting cast you would expect to see in this film with no one standing out.

Director Review: Don Michael Paul Don does a good job directing this film make the horror reach levels the franchise has never achieved.


Action: Tremors 5: Bloodlines has plenty of action with a lot being on the hunting side of the story.

Comedy: Tremors 5: Bloodlines does try to force in a couple of jokes in that don’t seem to work on the same levels previous films have had.

Horror: Tremors 5: Bloodlines is easily the most terrifying of the franchise with the creatures coming off scary each time you see them.

Settings: Tremors 5: Bloodlines does well moving the settings to Africa because there are a lot of different creatures in the wildlife that could be threats other than just the graboids,
Special Effects
: Tremors 5: Bloodlines uses good effects throughout to make the creatures come off scary for one of the first time.

Suggestion: Tremors 5: Bloodlines is one to watch if you liked the original, it is bar far the best of the sequels. (Watch)


Best Part: Creatures are actually scary.

Worst Part: The comedy feels slightly forced.


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Not yet

Post Credits Scene: Yes


Oscar Chances: No

Runtime: 1 Hour 39 Minutes


Overall: Easily the best sequel to the fun franchise that enters into the horror genre more




Under the Shadow (2016)

underDirector: Babak Anvari

Writer: Babak Anvari (Screenplay)

Starring: Narges Rashidi, Avin Manshadi, Bobby Naderi, Ray Haratian, Arash Marandi


Plot: As a mother and daughter struggle to cope with the terrors of the post-revolution, war-torn Tehran of the 1980s, a mysterious evil begins to haunt their home.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: One of the Best This Year


Story: Under the Shadow starts by putting us through a quick history lesson as we learn about the war between Iraq and Iran in the 1980s where anxiety in these countries had risen. We go onto meet Shideh (Rashidi) a mother in Tehran who is kicked out of her studies due to her side during the revolution who is raising her daughter Dorsa (Manshadi) with her husband Iraj (Naderi).

When Iraj gets drafted Shideh must look after Dorsa alone in the apartment which is always being targeted by the Iraqi missile. When Dorsa speaks to a relative of one of the residents she claims to have been told about Djion an evil spirit that she now believes in real.

When strange things start happening around the apartment Shideh start believing in the stories but we are left to wonder if this is real or just a side effect of all the war events going on around them.

Under the Shadow gives us a horror much like what the Babadok gave us where we get to wonder if there is horror or are all events effects from the stress of war. This works so well throughout the film because we are left to read the film in two ways because we can see the horror side and enjoy the scares but we can also look at the drama side and see just how this mother daughter relationship gets pushed to the very edge.

There are very good jump scares going on through this film which will surprise you when they hit because the best jump scares happen when you don’t see them. The acting between Rashidi and Manshadi both give brilliant performances throughout. The final point is looking at cultural aspects of the film all work too as we see how Shideh gets criticised for her actions in the film. This is easily one of the best horror films you will see this year.


Overall: One of the best horrors you will see this year.




Opinion Battles Round 22 – Favourite Franchise Serial Killer

Opinion Battles Round 22

Favourite Franchise Serial Killer

It is Halloween today and what better choice for a subject that looking at our favourite franchise serial killer. We have had many franchises in horror come in with a bang only to fizzle out with mindless sequels but then we have a few that stand the test of time.

If you want to take part in the next round of opinion battles we will be picking our favourite Guilty Pleasure and you will need to send your entries to by 13th November 2016.

Darren – Movie Reviews 101

Freddy Krueger – Nightmare on Elm Streetfredy

One, Two Freddy’s coming for you, three, four better lock your door, five, six grab your crucifix, seven, eight better stay up late, nine, ten never sleep again. How many serial killers can haunt your dreams? How many serial killers have their own rhyme? My points have been made. Freddy has become a true icon of horror that has both pure horror moments and with his one liners for the kills all make us want to laugh along by the latter sequels. Freddy also managed to transcend the normal in horror with Wes Craven’s New Nightmare which plays into the idea that he wants to escape the film world and enter the real world.

Freddy is also one of the few serial killers that has got himself a following because of Robert Englund himself being the man you instantly known as the killer himself.

Cinema Parrot Disco

Freddy Krueger – Nightmare on Elm Street


My favorite franchise serial killer? No contest – it’s Freddy Krueger. (Not in that horrible remake, though…. Ugh!!!!!). Anyway, A Nightmare On Elm Street was the first proper “slasher” type of film that I saw. I saw it, along with Fright Night, at a party at the age of thirteen (followed by a game of spin bottle). Nothing has topped it since (the movie, I mean – the kissing was pretty rubbish!). Maybe it’s bad that I started on such a classic as I’ve found most every horror movie since then to be a huge disappointment… Krueger was a brilliant invention & the cheesy, cheeky humor gave him a creepy sort of charm. He had an actual personality, unlike other slasher killers of the time. Jason Voorhees was a bore. I suppose some will choose people like Hannibal Lecter but I’ve never been a fan of serial killer movies. Give me good ‘ol 80’s slashers with cheesy looking gore! Freddy Krueger is still easily the best character in this genre.


Kim – Tranquil Dreams

Michael Myers – Halloweenmichael

There’s always something a little creepy about a man that doesn’t exactly have an agenda for why he kills. The franchise tries to give him a reason and a backstory and it doesn’t make sense but the looming figure of Michael Myers hot on his next victim’s trail always sends a kill down my spine. 


Alan – Content for you

Michael Myers – Halloweenmichael

Halloween has to be considered the true ‘Daddy’ of this horror genre. The first movie had all the elements that are now pretty much standard in these ‘being killed off one-by-one’ horror franchises. Michael Myers has become the model for a hundred other crazed killer movies that have followed, but never quite matched the Halloween franchise.



Rob – Movie Rob

Hannibal Lecter


S.G. Liput – Rhyme and Reason

Hannibal Lecterhannibal

It seems I’m at a disadvantage with this category, since I only know Jason Voorhees, Michael Myers, and Freddie Krueger by reputation. Slashers are not my cup of tea, and “favorite” probably isn’t the right word, but there’s only one murderer I know who won an Oscar for about 25 minutes of screen time. As cannibalistic psychiatrist Hannibal Lecter, Anthony Hopkins stole the show in The Silence of the Lambs, a disturbing powerhouse in an all-around disturbing film, and he went on to play the same role in the sequel Hannibal and prequel Red DragonHannibal Rising and the Hannibal TV series also followed without Hopkins, but Lecter continues to be a popular psychopath and was even chosen as AFI’s #1 movie villain in 2003.

Emma – Emma Explains It All

Leather-face – Texas Chainsaw Massacre

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Movie Reviews 101 Midnight Halloween Horror Franchise – Tremors 4 The Legend Begins (2004)

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Plot: A prequel to Tremors (1990), this movie tells us about the founders of Rejection Valley and how they defended it against the dirt dragons AKA graboids.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Nice Twist With Prequel


Story: Tremors 4: The Legend Begins starts by taking us back to 1889 Nevada where we find a group of miners being terrorised by the graboids. With danger in the mine the town of Rejection has its future looking bleak with the Chang family Pyong (Lo), Lu Wan (Look) and Fu Yien (Ly) having the future of having to return to China and Christine (Botsford), Juan (Roam) and Tecopa (Schellenberg) left waiting for something to happen. When Hiram Gummer (Gross) the owner of the mine arrives in the town to see what is happening as he could be the only saviour of the town.

When investigating the truth Hiram has to fund a hunting mission against the graboids attacking the town where he fast becomes fond of the small town. The man who comes to help out Black Hand Kelly (Drago) to the rescue the reputation Hiram no longer has.

Tremors 4: The Legend Begins does something I really enjoyed with the original with the side of the story being set in the community fighting to keep their town around. Turning it into a prequel also works because while only brief we do get to see another evolution of the graboids but also an earlier one. Having the Gummer being a complete opposite works to as by the end we learn how his generation would have created him. On the negative it is a western style which while looks good just doesn’t seem to get the same impact as it could.  In the series of films it works well though.


Actor Review


Michael Gross: Hiram Gummer is the owner of the mine, he turns up in Rejection to find out why the mining has stopped only to learn the truth where he must learn to love the small town while saving it from the graboids. Hiram comes in as a very stuck up man not being used to the western way of life. Michael is good in this role playing an almost opposite to the character we have got to know.

Sara Botsford: Christine is the hotel manager in the town who has to deal with the stuck up attitude while being a welcome host. Sara is solid in this role without doing too much.

Billy Drago: Black Hand Kelly is the hired gun that comes to the town to collect a bounty, he is one of the best shooters in the west with an attitude to go with it. Billy is good in this mysterious role but we don’t see enough of his character.

Brent Roam: Juan Pedilla is one of the few miners that has stayed in town mostly because he has been dreaming of something better. He is always looking for a new hat as he keeps losing his and stands next to Hiram in the battle. Brent is good in this supporting role offering the comic relief when needed.

Support Cast: Tremors 4: The Legend Begins has the supporting cast you have come to know which works on the level the original did with the community coming together to fight.

Director Review: S.S. WilsonS.S. brings the tone of the film back to what the original once had with the sense of community in the town with a western feel to it.


Action: Tremors 4: The Legend Begins is filled with the action you have come to expect from the franchise.

Comedy: Tremors 4: The Legend Begins does lose parts of the comedy side of the story but is still light hearted about the horror.

Horror: Tremors 4: The Legend Begins is starting to lose the horror side of the story now.

Western: Tremors 4: The Legend Begins takes the action into a western setting which is used for a couple of laughs and new ways to kill the graboids.

Settings: Tremors 4: The Legend Begins brings us back to the original town with a twist on the time period which I feel does help this film.
Special Effects
: Tremors 4: The Legend Begins has good special effects with most being practical.

Suggestion: Tremors 4: The Legend Begins is one I think the fans of the franchise will enjoy. (Franchise Fans Watch)


Best Part: Hiram character.

Worst Part: Isn’t the funniest in the series.

Kill Of The Film: Big Horse Johnson


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $5 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 41 Minutes

Tagline: A Revolution Has Begun…


Overall: Nice twist by making it a prequel but more of the same really.



Halloween Weekend – Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995)

halloweenDirector: Joe Chappelle

Writer: Daniel Farrands (Screenplay) Debra Hill, John Carpenter (Characters)

Starring: Donald Pleasence, Paul Rudd, Marianna Hagan, Mitchell Ryan, Kim Darby, Bradford English, Keith Bogart


Plot: Six years after Michael Myers last terrorized Haddonfield, he returns there in pursuit of his niece, Jamie Lloyd, who has escaped with her newborn child, for which Michael and a mysterious cult have sinister plans.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Poor Chapter


Story: Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers starts by filling in the last 6 years as Michael Myers and Jamie Lloyd have gone missing captured by the cult controlling Michael. When Jamie escapes with her baby Michael reappears to continue his body count and this time we have to meet a new string of people who have to find a way to stop him.

We have Tommy Doyle (Rudd) returning claiming to have seen Michael when he was younger and a new Strode family with Kara (Hagan) being the main target and finally Dr Loomis (Pleasence) has to come out of retirement to finish this once and for all.

Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers is the last time we see Dr Loomis and the film really tries to give us something fresh behind the reasons why Michael kills but because this is the first time we learn about it we find ourselves wondering where this has suddenly come from. The film itself is a mess because we just don’t get enough to work with that is original and you can see why they went back to Jamie Lee Curtis after this one.


Actor Review


Donald Pleasence: Dr Loomis is all retired writing his book about hi experience with Michael Myers is force into returning to Haddonfield once again when Michael and Jamie have reappeared after disappearing at the end of the last outing. Donald passed during the production of this film so it is unfair to judge him on his performance in a bad way at all.

Paul Rudd: Tommy Doyle is returning as an adult now as he is still haunted by what happened to him as a child. He has been studying the cases his whole life as it has consumed him and now he can finally stop Michael and the cult that is controlling him. Paul is solid in this role and at least his character makes some sense to the overall story line.

Marianna Hagan: Kara Strode is related to the family that adopted Laurie who now lives in the same house, she is a single mother trying to get herself an education but now she must fight to protect her son. Marianna is solid in this role but her character doesn’t seem to fit the series.

Support Cast: Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers has a supporting cast which like all the films in this franchise just become disposable characters.

Director Review: Joe ChappelleJoe doesn’t give us the best instalment of the franchise here but at least we did get to tackle potential origins behind Michael.


Horror: Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers has bloodier kills than before but when it comes to scares they just don’t come off very well at all.

Settings: Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers mixing up the settings somewhat by returning to Haddonfield but also moving away for the bigger picture to what has been going on.
Special Effects
: Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers has basic effects when it comes to the kills but otherwise not new to the genre.

Suggestion: Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers is one you could watch as part of the marathon but otherwise it can just be avoided. (Marathon Fans Watch)


Best Part: The bigger picture works in some parts.

Worst Part: The bigger picture also takes away what made Michael Frightening.


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $15 Million

Budget: $5 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 27 Minutes

Tagline: Terror Never Rests In Peace!


Overall: Plain sequel that was so bad it needed to be rebooted in the future.