ABC Film Challenge – Horror – Y – You’re Next (2011) (Revisited Spoiler Talk)

This is a Re-visited review, it will contain more spoilers that the normal review, to read the non-spoiler review click here

Director
: Adam Wingard

Writer: Simon Barrett (Screenplay)

Starring: Sharni Vinson, Nicholas Tucci, Wendy Glenn, AJ Bowen, Joe Swanberg, Margaret Laney, Amy Seimetz, Ti West

 

Plot: When the Davison family comes under attack during their wedding anniversary getaway, the gang of mysterious killers soon learns that one of the victims harbors a secret talent for fighting back.


Tagline – Don’t bother locking the doors. Animals don’t use doors.

Runtime: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

 

There will be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: One of the Best Modern Slasher

 

Story: You’re Next starts as we follow a couple that get butchered in their remote woodland house, with the window painted with the words ‘You’re Next’ in blood.

We then get to meet our main family, the Davison’s who are celebrating the parents Paul (Moran) and Aubrey (Crampton) 35th wedding anniversary, bring their kids and partners together, Erin (Vinson), Felix (Tucci), Zee (Glenn), Crispian (Bowen), Drake (Swanberg), Kelly (Laney), Aimee (Seimetz) and Tariq (West).

What starts as a family dinner filled with conversations which soon turn into an argument, the family comes under attack, we see how the family comes together to think of a solution to escape, which only leads to the first deaths. Erin shows a different side to her, unlike anything her partner Crispian has seen before, prepared for an attack or at least to defend herself from attackers.

The family is now facing enemies, the number is unknown to them and we need to whittle the cast down a little bit more too, so bring us in the bad decision character, Kelly who runs out into the dark woods surrounding the house screaming for help, this moment feels designed to show us what the killers are capable off, not picking between the men or the women, just looking for the kills.

Continuing to show a darker side Erin sets up the remaining family members to defend themselves, while showing she can put up a fight by being the first to kill one of the killers after he breaks into the home.

We now know just what the killers and Erin are capable off, but a twist changes everything as one of the family members is behind the attack, the only one that is capable of fighting back is Erin and our new hero icon is born.

 

Thoughts on You’re Next

 

Characters – Erin comes off as the girl next door time, former TA to her boyfriend in her final year of her master’s degree, being an Australian actress, we keep this trait for her character too which brings in to the conversation at the dinner part of the film. when the attack starts, her training comes first nature as she looks to defend the family from the attacks, her skills for surviving were not known by anyone in the family before tonight.

Felix is one of the brother’s in the family he isn’t the best at combat and like all siblings argues with the others, he is the one that is behind the attack wanting the inheritance money from his family, Zee is the girlfriend of Felix, in on the plan, waiting for her time to get involved, we have her around a lot, but we don’t see her do much. Crispian is the boyfriend of Erin, the one that bought her to the party, seemingly the eldest brother and the one that disappears through the film, always feeling shady. The rest of the siblings and partners are used for the basic kills to show us just how the killers operate, as are the parents. The killers themselves in a Lamb, Tiger and Fox mask fill the menace required showing zero moments of hesitation when it comes to aiming for the kill.

PerformancesSharni Vinson is fantastic in this leading role, she takes over the mantel of the lone survivor in a horror film, kicks ass throughout the film, she is the true star of this film. when we start looking at the rest of the cast they all know exactly how to play their roles without taking away from the leading lady.

StoryThe story follows a family coming together for a wedding anniversary party only to come under attack from an unknown group of attacks them, it follows the panic and takes a twist which turns the tables on the attackers, with the deadliest threat being one of the members of the house. We do get the bad decisions which comes from the disposable characters which does give us the chance to see the kills impact and we do get a twist along the way about who the attackers are. For the slasher genre this breathed new life into the sub-genre and makes us want to see where the director/writer will go next.

HorrorThe horror elements of the film show us the killers getting the kills which are filled with blood and certain ones are original and will make you remember them, let talk the blender.

SettingsThe film is set in the simple location of one house in the middle of the woods, there is a walkable neighbour, though it does dispose of the people in that house in the opening sequence, which gives us the isolation needed for the attack to take place in.

Special EffectsThe effects used for the film are great, we have unique looking kills which will be ones that you do remember once the film has finished, see the blender again.


Scene of the Movie –
The blender, you will understand why.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The disposable characters while used to show the killers make the annoying mistakes.

Final ThoughtsThis is one of the best modern slasher movies out there, it can be enjoyed by horror fans, it has blood, gore and twist galore.

 

Overall: Must watch horror movie.

Rating

 

 

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ABC Film Challenge – Horror – The Victim (2011)

Director: Michael Biehn

Writer: Michael Biehn (Screenplay) Reed Lackey (Story)

Starring: Michael Biehn, Jennifer Blanc, Ryan Honey, Danielle Harris, Denny Kirkwood

 

Plot: A man lives alone in a remote cabin and is surprised by his visitors.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Thriller That Lacks That Punch

 

Story: The Victim starts when police officers Jonathan Cooger (Kirkwood) and James Harrison (Honey) kill Mary (Harris) (Yes, they did kill Danielle Harris in the opening sequence), Annie (Blanc) escapes through the woods to the remote cabin owned by Kyle (Biehn).

Kyle agrees to help Annie as we are luckily saved from wasting Harris with flashbacks which explain why the two friends found themselves in the woods partying. The two look for proof which can save her life but Kyle’s quiet life soon turns into a nightmare.

 

Thoughts on The Victim

 

Characters/PerformanceKyle is the lonely man who enjoys being away from the world in his cabin in the middle of the woods. He uses his brains to get to the bottom of the situation with the strangers. Annie is the woman in need of help after her best friend is murdered. James Harrison is the cop who killed Mary but now he needs to cover it all up to save his future.

Performance wise, Michael Biehn does take dual roles as director and star but he never convinces in the leading role even if he is the best performer. The rest of the acting is weak throughout the film never being convincing in any of the emotions needed for the characters.

StoryThe story is easy to follow even though you feel there will be a twist because that is the only thing that could make this feel good. The flashbacks do all feel random because you find yourself wondering what the point actually is about them.

ThrillerThe film does try its best to keep us on the edge of our seats but in the end just feels like it fizzles away.

SettingsThe woods make for a good setting because we know the characters can’t just run from the situation but are going to make sure it all ends there.

Special EffectsThe effects are used lightly and do come off but are not important.

Final ThoughtsThis is a thriller that doesn’t click on the levels it needs to, we are left just watching not the best acting in not the best story.

 

Overall: Plain old thriller

Rating

 

 

ABC Film Challenge – Horror – Q – Quarantine 2: Terminal (2011)

Director: John Pogue

Writer: John Pogue (Screenplay)

Starring: Mercedes Mason, Josh Cooke, Mattie Liptak, Ignacio Serricchio, Noree Victoria

 

Plot: A plane is taken over by a mysterious virus. When the plane lands it is placed under quarantine. Now a group of survivors must band together to survive the quarantine.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Good Idea, Badly Acted

 

Story: Quarantine 2: Terminal starts as we meet our flight attendances Jenny (Mason) and Paula (Blair) who have a low number passengers flight across America, I think. We get to meet the different passengers including teacher that takes Jenny’s fancy Henry (Cooke), teenager travelling alone George (Liptak), the list does go on but most importantly this red eye flight is underway.

When one of the passengers becomes infected by an unknow virus the plane makes an emergency landing and finds themselves quarantined in the terminal. Jenny must keep the passengers calm as the tensions rise between them as they wait to see just how they will make it out of this situation.

 

Thoughts on Quarantine 2: The Terminal

 

Characters/PerformanceJenny is our main character a flight attendant who knows how to have a good time, she must keep her passengers calm through the situation but nothing can prepare her for these events. Henry is a teacher who gets to play out as a potential love interest for Jenny, he stands up for what is right when passengers get out of control. George is a teenager travelling alone and Jenny’s responsibility on the flight however much he wants to be left alone, when things go wrong he wants to stay protected. The rest of the characters are what you expect from characters that are trying to make an impact in horror movies. It would be fair we get introduced to slightly too many characters that makes it hard to give them enough development.

Performance wise, well the acting isn’t great or even good through the film but at least it isn’t just shaky cam now.

StoryBy now we all know the first Quarantine movie was a full remake of {Rec} the Spanish horror movie, but this sequel takes the franchise in a different direction, this is a good thing because by the end we learn that there is a bigger picture to everything that has unfolding. I am glad we went in a different location even if the idea is very similar it does have enough for world building even if not everything is shown to the full extent.

Horror/Mystery/Sci-FiThe horror side of the film continues the idea that people have become infected and will turn into blood thirsty monster, this is all good without being terribly scary. The mystery will leave us wondering what is going on and we do get answers through the film. the sci-fi well that comes out in the mystery.

SettingsThe film is set both on the plane and the terminal in which it lands, we get the lock down to put our character trapped with the infected trying to kill them as they look to either hide or escape, this all works for the genre.

Special EffectsThe effects show we have a bigger budget now and that we can get into creature new ways to kill the infected too, everything comes off well.

Final ThoughtsThis is a good idea for a sequel especially after the criticism the film got for the shot for shot remake the first was, now we get a film that could have built the world up nicely for sequels.

 

Overall: An idea that could have worked well.

Rating

 

 

ABC Film Challenge – Horror – E – Exit Humanity (2011)

Director: John Geddes

Writer: John Geddes (Screenplay)

Starring: Brian Cox, Mark Gibson, Dee Wallace, Bill Moseley, Stephen McHattie, Jordan Hayes

 

Plot: A young man’s struggle to survive in the aftermath of a deadly undead outbreak during the American Civil War.


Tagline – History has a violent way of repeating itself.

Runtime: 1 Hour 54 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Slow, But Enjoyable Zombie Movie

 

Story: Exit Humanity starts during the civil war, where Edward Young (Gibson) battled but the war bought the rise of the undead which Edward has battled successfully until they get his family, looking to get across country to spread his son’s ashes he sets out alone.

Along the way he meets a fellow survivor who has been battling General Williams (Moseley) and his men including Medic Johnson (McHattie) who believe they can control the undead, so know teaming with Isaac (Seybold) he sets out on helping him defeat these evil men, all while being narrated but Malcolm Young (Voiced by Cox).

 

Thoughts on Exit Humanity

 

Characters – Malcolm Young is our narrator, he tells the story like he is writing it in a book, Edward Young is the man who fought in the Civil War but now lives in an undead infested land where he loses his family but now he fights the undead in a quest to put his son’s ashes to rest. Eve is a lone woman living in the woods, she is believed to be a witch which built her reputation for the locals, she opens her doors to Edward and his party. General Williams is the man that believes there is a cure, but his evil ways lead to them experimenting on the living to find it. Medic Johnson is Williams’ doctor who performs these experiments.

PerformancesThe performances from the cast are good, we have the horror icons in Dee Wallace, Bill Moseley and Stephen McHattie that give us good performances throughout. Brian Cox narrating is engaging throughout while Mark Gibson as our lead is good with all the bigger named actors.

StoryThe story here is a zombie one, which we have seen plenty off, but it does take place in a Civil War era, which is an original spin on it. We have the journey our hero goes on, a villain that would end it and as always someone looking for a cure. The story is also told in chapter as if it was read from a book and strangely the narration side of the story being told in more interesting than the acting side of everything unfolding.

HorrorThe horror is a zombie world where the humans seem to be the bigger enemy, which works but isn’t on the scary factor.

SettingsThe film is set in the Civil War era, so we don’t have big strong structures for safety we are in the woods with our characters needing to find a way to survive without the ammunition the modern zombie films would have.

Special EffectsThe effects are used well which is mostly practical as we see how the zombies are created to fit the time.


Scene of the Movie –
I liked how the opening was narrated to us.

That Moment That Annoyed Me It does feel like a long movie, with the muted action sequences.

Final ThoughtsThis is an interesting take on the zombie genre, it places us into a different era with the same threat but does feel at times like it is being told as something one of the great poets would have written in the era.

 

Overall: This is an interesting if take on the genre even if slightly too slow.

Rating

 

 

 

 

 

ABC Film Challenge – Romance – C – Chalet Girl (2011)

Director: Phil Traill

Writer: Tom Williams (Screenplay)

Starring: Felicity Jones, Ed Westwick, Bill Nighy, Brooke Shields, Bill Bailey, Tasmin Egerton, Sophia Bush

 

Plot: Former skateboard champion Kim wants to make more money after her mother’s tragic death. She joins the elite posh servicing company, which sends her off to Austria.


Tagline – How to marry a billionaire.

Runtime: 1 Hour 37 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Sweet, Delightful and Enjoyable

 

Story: Chalet Girl starts as we meet Kim (Jones) a skateboarding icon that has vanished from the circuit following the death of her mother, working in a burger restaurant caring for father Bill (Bailey). Needing to make more money Kim takes a chance to work as a chalet girl for an elite posh household in Austria, giving on the basic training from fellow girl Georgie (Egerton), she gets to start a new direction.

The family includes father Richard (Nighy) that is willing to give anyone a chance, his son Jonny (Westwick) who is happy to accept Kim, his girlfriend Chloe (Bush) and mother Caroline (Shields) are quick to judge. Over her time in the slopes Kim finds that she is a natural snowboarder and learns to love this new life, but struggles to shake her own demons.

 

Thoughts on Chalet Girl

 

Characters – Kim is a common English girl whose talents are great for home life and is now hiding from his potential from the world after the death of her mother. She has always been safe even though her skateboarding career doesn’t seem so safe, she takes a job she clear would never fit in around the clients, she soon learns that she is a natural snowboarder, but will need to overcome her past nightmares to continue her life. Jonny is one of the household that visit, he catches Kim’s attention, but has a girlfriend, he is open to giving Kim a chance in this world even if she isn’t from the posh background like the normal girls they get. Richard is the owner of the house, he welcomes any help as long as they can do the job without any problems.

PerformancesFelicity Jones broke onto the scene with this role, she is fantastic as the common girl, never letting her performance look glamorous and making it easy to connect to her real-life issues. Ed Westwick is good in his role looking the part of the rich attractive guy. Bill Nighy and the rest of the supporting cast are all great through the film with Bill Bailey does get the most laughs.

StoryThe story follows a young girl about to take on adulthood with her first long-term trip away from home, she must learn how the high life live, while battling her own past which haunts her to this day and become the star in the sport she never knew she had the talent for. This is one of the strongest points in this movie, the other side of the film is watching how she falls in love with a guy from this other world, which I feel takes away from just how important her journey needs to be. For a popcorn rom com this is a by the book story that can be enjoyed and doesn’t seem to go in any direction you wouldn’t imagine it going.

Comedy/Romance For a comedy this gets plenty of laughs from the whole cast, while romance side of the film is by the book, but does take away from the bigger story.

SettingsThe film takes Kim from start in her normal common life, to live a life she had never imagined in Austria.


Scene of the Movie –
Snowboard run.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The commentator for the snowboarding event.

Final ThoughtsThis is an enjoyable rom com that does have a deeper meaning for our leading lady Kim, this will leave you with a smile on your face and can be enjoyed by all.

 

Overall: Leaves you will a smile on your face.

Rating