Movie Reviews 101 Midnight Halloween Horror – Night of the Living Deb (2015)

Director: Kyle Rankin

Writer: Andy Selsor (Screenplay)

Starring: Maria Thayer, Michael Cassidy, Julie Brister, Nan’l Meiklejohn

 

Plot: After a girls’ night out, endearingly awkward Deb wakes up in the apartment of the most attractive guy in Portland, Maine. She’s thrilled, but she can’t remember much of what got her there. Pretty boy Ryan only knows it was a mistake and ushers her out the door… into a full-scale zombie apocalypse. Now, a walk of shame becomes a fight for survival as the mismatched pair discovers that the only thing scarier than trusting someone with your life… is trusting them with your heart.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Enjoyable Horror Comey

 

Story: Night of the Living Deb starts as Deb (Thayer) is on a girls night with best friend Ruby (Brister), this night Deb finally goes after a guy she wants in Ryan (Cassidy). After spending the night together Ryan tries to get rid of Deb but her trip home turned into a nightmare as the undead have risen.

Deb and Ryan must put aside their difference to rescue their loved ones and make it to safety before becoming the victims of the zombie apocalypse.

 

Thoughts on Night of the Living Deb

 

Characters/PerformanceDeb is considered a geeky woman who finds a guy considered out of her league in Ryan, now her geek knowledge will help her fight the zombies. Ryan is a free-thinking son of a rich family, but his own beliefs will change how Deb thinks of the world. The rest of the characters including the family of Ryan who are involved with what is happening.

Performance wise, Maria Thayer is great in the leading role, she is funnier hitting on nearly all the comical moments in the film. Michael Cassidy is good in this role too but in places doesn’t click as well as Maria. The rest of the cast all work well with Ray Wise fitting the style of film very well.

StoryThe story is pretty much a routine by the book horror comedy with a zombie background. The idea that our characters know what a zombie apocalypse is does help the story but otherwise the only original angle is the opposites needing to work together. But this is fun and all we need it to be.

Comedy/HorrorThe comedy hots for the most part here, we get plenty of pop culture reference and movie lines that add to the comedy too but on the horror, scale the attempts of horror fall into the idea that things are almost comically horror rather than scary.

SettingsThe small-town setting shows us just how the outbreak could happen with people not being able to escape if things got covered up.

Special EffectsThe film doesn’t use many special effects but the few times it does they are fine.

Final ThoughtsIf you like a good zombie comedy that completely understands what it wants to be this is for you to enjoy.

 

Overall: Horror Comedy Fans Watch.

Rating

 

 

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Movie Reviews 101 Midnight Halloween Horror – The Neighbour (2016)

Director: Marcus Dunstan

Writer: Marcus Dunstan, Patrick Melton (Screenplay)

Starring: Josh Stewart, Bill Engvall, Alex Essoe, Ronnie Gene Blevins, Luke Edwards, Melisa Bolona, Skipp Sudduth

 

Plot: Set in Cutter Mississippi, the film follows a man who discovers the dark truth about his neighbor and the secrets he may be keeping in the cellar.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Good Horror Thriller

 

Story: The Neighbour starts as small time criminal John (Stewart) and his wife Rosie (Essoe) move into a farmhouse, the town shuns him knowing his past and the police heckle him looking to catch him out, but it is their neighbour that interests them in Troy (Engvall) a hunter at heart, that doesn’t like trespassers.

When John’s cover is blown, he rushes home to escape with Rosie only to find out she has gone missing and the clear subject is Troy. John enters his house looking for answers, but what he finds will leave him needing to fight to survive while trying to save Rosie.

 

Thoughts on The Neighbour

 

Characters/PerformanceJohn is a shady criminal, he drifts between towns but now he looks to escape, he must show all his abilities when it comes to sneaky to beat an even deadlier criminal group. Troy is a leader of a group of criminals he has a brilliant enterprise going on that he is the front for. Rosie is the wife of John who ends up being captured and is just a victim in most of this.

Performance wise, Josh Stewart is making a name for himself in this style of horror after the Collector films and he is good in these films. Bill Engvall is a good villain working well for the film with Alex Essoe being a standard female victim for the most part.

StoryThe story of two different sides of the criminal worlds clashing over something out of their hands does make it hard for us to pick a side but we do a good action horror side to this film. if we had a good side and a bad side it would be too easy to cheer for one but having to route for a criminal we do get something good here. The formula is tried and tested and easily left open for a sequel if need be.

Crime/HorrorTwo crime worlds colliding works very well with the horror side being a battle to survive what would be certain death in captured.

SettingsThe film is set over two neighbouring hours which does help the film create what is needed for the secretive side of what is going on.

Special EffectsWe have mostly practical effects for everything that is going on and it all clicks for what happens in the film.

Final ThoughtsThis is a solid horror that is well worth a watch.

 

Overall: Horror fans enjoy this one.

Rating

 

 

Nosferatu the Vampyre (1979)

nosDirector: Werner Herzog

Writer: Werner Herzog (Screenplay)

Starring: Klaus Kinski, Isabelle Adjani, Bruno Ganz, Roland Topor, Walter Ladengast

 

Plot: Jonathan and Lucy live in Wismar and the Count wants a house there. Varna is a port on the Black Sea, close to Dracula’s castle.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Dark Dracula

 

Story: Nosferatu the Vampyre starts when Jonathan (Ganz) must travel to Transylvania to meet the reclusive Count Dracula (Kinski) who wants to buy a home in Jonathan’s village of Wismar.  When Dracula gets drawn to Lucy (Adjani) Jonathan’s wife he heads to Wismar leaving Jonathan battling his own health but also wanting to save Lucy from the evil country Dracula.

With Dracula in Wismar we see how the people of the town start coming down with the plague like symptoms as it is up to Dr Helsing (Ladengast) to try and stop Dracula taking Lucy away.

 

Thoughts on Nosferatu the Vampyre

 

StoryWe all know the Dracula story right, well this is the same only that they travel back to Wismar rather than London, it is a classic tale but I found myself disappointed because I watch the wrong version of this film.

HorrorWe get a lot of horror like images thrown towards us through this film which is fine but you never find the Dracula character as scary as he could have been in this world.

Characters/PerformanceThe characters are all known from the books with the main focal point being on Count Dracula who is obviously the most famous part of the film. The performances are all good making you believe in the peril throughout the film.

SettingsWE have excellently created settings used throughout the fil which put us in the time in question as well as seeing the different worlds Dracula is from to where he ends up.

Final ThoughtsThis is a very good version of Dracula with some very dark imagery throughout but in the end it is just another version of the story that has been told way too many times.

 

Overall: The darkest and most twisted version of Dracula that I have seen.

Rating75

 

 

New Jack City (1991)

Director: Mario Van Peebles

Writer: Thomas Lee Wright, Barry Michael Cooper (Screenplay)

Starring: Wesley Snipes, Ice-T, Allen Payne, Chris Rock, Mario Van Peebles, Michael Michele, Bill Nunn, Judd Nelson

 

Plot: A crime lord ascends to power and becomes megalomaniacal while a maverick police detective vows to stop him.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Good Addition to Gangster Genre

 

Story: New Jack City starts in New York City as the drug war is sky high with drug maverick Nino Brown (Snipes) has a plan to dominate the cities drug trafficking process. When Nino gets complete control over an apartment building where he produces the product holding the resident’s prisoners.

Two years have passed and now Detective Stone (Peebles) wants Appleton (Ice-T) and Nick Peretti (Nelson) to lead an investigation to take down Nino. Hiring former dealer Pookie (Rock) to go undercover due to his tight connection with Nino we are left to see how they plan on taking down Nino.

 

Thoughts on New Jack City

 

Characters/PerformanceNino is what you would call a brilliant drug kingpin that fully controls the operation and a threat to the city, he will kill anyone that gets in his way. Scotty is the cop that pushes the limits too often making this battle against drugs personal. Nick is the disgraced cop from another town but doesn’t fit into the neighbourhood but is also just as committed to bringing down Nino.

Performance wise, Snipes does shine in this leading role getting to have a lot of fun with his performance, Ice-T is good but not as convincing to this world, with Judd Nelson giving us as good supporting role. Chris Rock should get praise for his performance which I believe was one of his first roles.

StoryThe story bottles down to the rise and fall of Nino Brown or any other generic crime boss, this is because we have him start his operation and facing enemies from police and other drug bosses. This isn’t the most original story but is a good watch for anyone who is a fan of the genre.

Action/CrimeThe action when needed is mostly wild gun battles that show the chaos the drug wars can cause. The crime side of the story comes from the idea that we are dealing with drugs circulating around the big city.

SettingsNew York City is a great choice for the setting because it shows the different sides of the tracks the people can all come from in this war.

Final ThoughtsWhen it comes to the drug related films I am not the biggest fan but this one is an easy watch for the fans of the genre.

 

Overall: This is a good addition to the genre that has its place in the gangster history.

Rating

 

 

Neruda (2016)

NERUDA is available on DVD, Blu-ray and Digital from 10th July.

Director: Pablo Larrain

Writer: Guillermo Calderon (Screenplay)

Starring: Gael Garcia Bernal, Luis Gnecco, Mercedes Moran, Emilio Gutierrez Caba, Diego Munoz

 

Plot: An inspector hunts down Nobel Prize-winning Chilean poet, Pablo Neruda, who becomes a fugitive in his home country in the late 1940s for joining the Communist Party.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Edge of your Seat Historical Thriller

 

Story: Neruda starts in the years following World War II, Senator Pablo Neruda (Gnecco) and Nobel Prize-Winning poet going against the President of Chile, he gets called a communist and must face jail or life on the run. Pablo choices to go on the run while still fighting for his beliefs with Inspector Oscar Peluchonneau (Bernal) assigned to ruin him.

We see how Neruda used his abilities as a poet to stay one step ahead of the police with people happy to open their door to a man they considered a great man, with this Inspector Oscar learns how Neruda can be staying in hiding and learning to follow the clues about this man wondering if he is as much of a criminal as the President makes him out to be.

 

Thoughts on Neruda

 

Characters/PerformancePablo Neruda is a brilliant poet, famous throughout Chile, he was a senator but must give up his limelight life once he is accused of being a communist but he remains on the run with the connection that still respect him for his work. Oscar Peluchonneau is the man that is tracking Neruda, handpicked by the President as he stays calm during his pursuit as he learns more about the man he is tracking.

Performance wise, Gael Garcia Bernal is good through the film as the inspector tracking down Neruda. Luis Gnecco is the star of this film effortless stepping into the shoes of the poet.

StoryThe story of the cat and mouse between Neruda and Oscar is an interesting watch, because we do learn about the man hunt for an accused communist who was respected by too many people to be turned on by them all. We see both sides of the hunt too, if you hadn’t heard of this poet and his battle to stay free, then you will get to see how he achieved this now.

Biography/CrimeLooking into the life of Pablo Neruda is an interesting view point because now we can see how this man was considered a criminal having to live a life on the run when he didn’t commit any crimes.

SettingsThe settings show us how Neruda could stay hidden for so long and how he kept his reputation through this time.

Final ThoughtsFor all the history fans out there, this is a film you will be enjoying learning about a nationwide man hunt that is well known through Chile.

 

Overall: This is an interesting historical drama learning about a great poet that escaped the country.

Rating