Lords of Chaos (2018) Movie Review

Director: Jonas Akerlund

Writer: Dannis Magnusson, Jonas Akerlund (Screenplay) Michael Moynihan (Lords of Chaos Writing)

Starring: Rory Culkin, Emory Cohen, Jack Kilmer, Sky Ferreira, Valter Skarsgard, Anthony De La Torre, Jonathan Barnwell

Plot: A teenager’s quest to launch Norwegian Black Metal in Oslo in the early 1990s results in a very violent outcome.

Runtime: 1 Hour 58 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Lords of Chaos starts as we meet Euronymous (Culkin) the creator of the band ‘Mayhem’ who uses the sound of Norwegian Black Metal to make themselves stand out from the other heavy metal rock bands.

As Euronymous starts recruiting different members to his band, he sees the darker side within the music, looking to continue to make the sound around the world, despite the pain the people will go through, they continue to promote their music to encourage the darkest parts of people’s minds.

Thoughts on Lords of Chaos

ThoughtsLords of Chaos is meant to be a biopic diving into the horror of the Norwegian Black Metal band and their lead singer, as we see how they dive into their experience in the music industry, trying to make something more of themselves in a world where they will look to cause more trouble than music. This is a story that seems to follow people with a dream that step over the line of what would be acceptable in achieving it, there is nothing wrong with wanting to be a black metal musician, but when you start creating destruction against other people’s beliefs, you need to look at yourself in the mirror. The story does seem to create one of the more annoying set of characters, who are filled with the selfish ways, while never addressing the bigger issues they might have with the world. The performances are fine, with Rory Culkin in the lead role doing a wonderful job at making himself standout in this world.

Final Thoughts Lords of Chaos is a loud chaotic world created by the darkest side of ambition.

Incident in a Ghostland (2018) Movie Review

Director: Pascal Laugier

Writer: Pascal Laugier (Screenplay)

Starring: Crystal Reed, Mylene Farmer, Anastasia Phillips, Emilia Jones, Taylor Hickson

Plot: A mother of two who inherits a house is confronted with murderous intruders on the first night in their new home and fights for her daughters’ lives. Sixteen years later when the daughters reunite at the house, things get really strange.

Runtime: 1 Hour 31 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Overly Twisty Film

Story: Incident in a Ghostland starts as a mother Pauline (Farmer) is moving her two daughters Beth (Jones) and Vera (Hickson) across country to a new home, only for them to get attacked by a serial killer. Years later Beth (Reed) has become a horror author, one of the most famous in the industry, while Pauline and Vera (Phillips) remained in the home.

Beth returns to the home to discover Vera is struggling with the nightmares, but not everything is what it seems in the home, but can Beth handle the truth.

Thoughts on Incident in a Ghostland

Characters – Beth suffered through the traumatic childhood event moving to LA to become a successful author and having her own family, she must return to the home where the trauma happened to make a discovery that will leave her shocked. Vera never left the home, constantly traumatised by the events of what happened, showing the warnings of the truth to her sister. Pauline is their mother who does want to move them to a new home, she is trying to give the girls a fresh home. When it comes to the killers, we get to see their twisted fantasies unfolding.

PerformancesWhen it comes to the performances, we must look at the pairs, the younger and older versions of both the girls, Crystal Reed and Emilia Jones as Beth, who both show the strengths in their character, while Anastasia Phillips and Taylor Hickson bring more of the panic to everything we are seeing.

StoryThe story here follows two sisters that see their new life shattered by a serial killer attack, one escapes the pain of the world, while the other remains trapped, only for a reunion to bring about a new nightmare for one of them. This is a story that does do something different with what would be just a normal reunion horror, it does diving into the mental state caused by such a break, which does drive the story forward, it might well go for too many attempts at twists, which doesn’t help with the final outcome. We can’t go into too much more of the story without giving away too much of the truth behind twists.

Horror/MysteryThe horror in this film does come from seeing what the serial killer wants to do with the family and the nightmares it has left them experiencing, this does dive into the mystery of everything too, showing us just what might be happening to the family in the aftermath of the attack.

SettingsThe film uses the isolated home to show us how the serial killer would act, what it would mean to them to get the family alone to do what they wanted, while older Beth has the perfect life, a complete opposite to what the killers want.

Special EffectsThe effects in the film are strong, we do get to see the gore the director is know for, only not as intense, but we still get skin being ripped off body parts.


Scene of the Movie – The truth.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Dumb Cops.

Final Thoughts This is a horror that does keep us guessing, while diving in a direction we didn’t see coming, it has strong gore, only it ends up pulling into the overuse of twists to get the biggest impact.

Overall: Overly Twisty.

Killer Weekend (2018) Movie Review

Director: Ben Kent

Writer: Ben Kent, Joel Wilenius (Screenplay)

Starring: Mark Heap, Sean Verey, Danny Kirrane, David Mumeni, Timothy Renouf, Perry Fitzpatrick, Ewen MacIntosh

Plot: When a hopeless stag party goes on a mock zombie survival weekend, an unfortunate turn of events leave them fighting for their lives.


Tagline – It’s all fun and games until some one gets hurt

Runtime: 1 Hour 25 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Simple Stag Do Comedy

Story: Killer Weekend starts as Sam (Verey) is heading off for his stag do, with his good friends Eric (Kirrane), Toby (Mumeni), Myles (Renouf), Cheese (Fitzpatrick) and a few reluctant guests Al (MacIntosh) and Brandon (Abbott) along with the father-in-law Gerald (Heap).

The guys are going on a zombie survival weekend, which ends up taking a bad twist, when the four friends accidentally start killing the zombie actors as they look for a way back to safety.

Thoughts on Killer Weekend

Characters – Sam is the stag on this do, he wants to have it with his closest friends, only he has invited others to keep people happy, he is trying to get the approval of his father-in-law, while be portrayed as the calmest of the crew. Eric is the dumbest of the crew, he will always do something wrong, though he did plan this weekend believing they are facing real zombies. Toby is the married member of the group, he is always talking about his kid, being the first of the group to grow up, often talking the most sense too. Gerald is the father-in-law that has a military background and has always looked down on Sam, he gets on with the most unlikely of the friends too.

PerformancesThe performances in this film do rely on the chemistry between the characters, this is the highlight of the film, with the banter coming through strongly, though most of the acting is solid enough for this film without being anything more than that.

StoryThe story here follows a group of guys on a stag do survival weekend only for the weekend to take a turn when they accidentally kill one of the actors involved as the zombie, leading to a series of events which make it worse for him. This is a story which plays into the idea that one mistake can only make things worse and the events of everything don’t help either. This does seem like it wants to go into a full horror, only just wants to be a comedy about how horror could happen, it just doesn’t commit in direction of the story, because most of the characters are just the generic normal.

Comedy/HorrorThe comedy is what we get the most, it does offer attempted laughs through the film, without getting enough clever jokes for what we are meant to be seeing, with the horror mostly being about what would happen if things went wrong.

SettingsThe film uses the survival weekend woodland for most of the setting, it shows they group in the middle of nowhere searching for safety, though it should be easy to find.

Special EffectsThe effects are used to show the injuries the characters get, which are more often than not off camera, with us just seeing the aftermath.


Scene of the Movie – Just calm down.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – It is too generic with characters.

Final Thoughts This is a comedy horror that tries too hard on the comedy only to become generic and not as edgy as it wants to be.

Overall: Not edgy enough.

The Adventures of Snow White & Rose Red (2018) Movie Review ‘One for the Youngest Members of the Family’

The Adventures of Snow White and Rose Red – One for the Youngest Members of the Family

 

Director: Andrew Balog, Victoria Batista, Nicole Coady

Writer: Olivia Anderson, Alexandra Marello (Screenplay) Nicole Coady (Story)

Starring: Demetra Zorbas, Callista Zorbas, Andrew Balog, Madeline Balta, Daniel Batista, Matt Beekman

Plot: Snow White, a kind girl with a passion for animals and books, is best friends with her sister, Rose Red, an outgoing girl with a curious spirit. They spend their days roaming the forest and playing pretend. But it’s not long before they learn that the woods they have lived in all their lives are nothing short of magical.

Runtime: 1 Hour 14 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: The Adventures of Snow White and Rose Red starts as two sisters Snow White (Demetra Zorbas) and Rose Red (Callista Zorbas) travel around their local forest meeting many different characters from fairy tales, including Rapunzel (Balta), Prince Charming (Batista and Alice, heading to Wonderland. Each encounter will see the pair looking for a different solution to help the people of the woods get through their troubles.

Thoughts on The Adventures of Snow White and Rose Red

ThoughtsThe Adventures of Snow White and Rose Red is a nice little series of fairy tale adventures that follow the sisters meeting other figures from fairy tales as they help them with the problems the tales present, now they will look for non-conflicted solutions, while giving the message of inclusion for all. Everything we go through is simplified to make it easier to present to the youngest audiences out there, not offering enough for the mature audience, holding it back from being a complete family film. This is an interesting concept, but never manages to feel as convincing as it should be, trying to go in the opposite direction of the Brothers Grimm of fairy tales, trying to push heavily on the idea everyone in life can be good.

Final Thoughts The Adventures of Snow White and Rose Red is one of the purest family films, targeting all the good in life.

ABC Film Challenge – Adventure – X – A-X-L (2018) Movie Review

Director: Oliver Daly

Writer: Oliver Daly (Screenplay)

Starring: Alex Neusraedter, Becky G, Alex MacNicoll, Dominic Rains, Thomas Jane, Lou Taylor Pucci, Patricia De Leon

Plot: A.X.L. is a top-secret, robotic dog who develops a special friendship with Miles and will go to any length to protect his new companion.


Tagline – Man’s best friend has evolved

Runtime: 1 Hour 38 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: A-X-L starts when off road biker Miles (Neustaedter) gets to learn how the wealthy riders like Sam Fontaine (MacNicoll) treat a threat to their position in the sport. Miles gets left injured in the desert where he ends up meet a robotic prototype dog A-X-L that he helps fix.

As Miles gets closer with A-X-L the two become bonded, but he needs to learn how to control him before he hurts someone or falls into the wrong hands, as the contractor awaits to much needed improvements in their robot.

Thoughts on A-X-L

Characters & Performances – Miles is a off road biker from a poor family that has always worked to improve himself, knowing about the hard work it takes to reach this level he will show his commitment and be willing to take a chance on making connections. His kind nature helps the robotic dog, giving the pair a connection which will show the true abilities of the AI inside its head. Alex Neustaedter does well in this role with a lot of the work being the stunt-based work. Sara Reyes has seen her family working for the rich biker family for years and getting left on the outside, taking a shine to the work mentality of Miles. She joins Miles in finding the reality to finding a solution for the pair. Becky G is entertaining through the film. A-X-L is the robotic dog built for weapon that escapes and gets rescued by Miles, where it gets to learn more about the world. Great at fitting into the world and looking like a creature that could well be made sooner than we think. We get to see the different military creators, the family of Miles and the bully figures against Miles. This is all the basic roles that do what is needed for the film.

StoryThe story here follows a down on his luck off road biker that meets a robotic dog that has been left abandoned from its creature, leading to everyone trying to hunt for the dog, while Miles must find his own place in the world. This is a good opening to a world with the basics being down well to prepare the world for the potential of us having something bigger in the future. It does end up feeling like every origin idea we have seen before, but it does work for what we need for everything. It would have been nice to see more time with Miles and A-X-L, but it could have been a start to something bigger in the future.

ThemesA-X-L is an action sci-fi adventure that gives us entertaining action, the sci-fi creations needed for the robotic dog looks brilliant in the film, potentially being something we might well see in the future too. It might only look like the opening to something bigger.

 

A-X-L is an easy to watch sci-fi adventure film showing the change the future could happen.