Wake (2022) Short Movie Review

Wake is a short movie directed by Martin Klapperbein, written by Liam Higgins that will follow one man’s (Michael Wamara) journey through grief of losing his wife and soon-to-be daughter. The man will journey through the destruction created in his life, as he searches for answers, becoming the metaphor for mental health of the struggle, he simple doesn’t know how to express.

Wake is a story that will put the importance on men’s mental health that they don’t always want to address, or even know how to, in fear of the toxic masculinity created within the world. Wake, is attempting to prove the dark journey men can go through, alone, constantly proving that people can reach out, be there for anyone who needs them in life.

Wake could easily be used as an advert to put a bright spotlight on what is going on in the heads of people who suffer loss. Wake could also be an extended film, examining more of the pain he went through, showing the help he could get, if he asked for the help.

Wake is a film that will make you pause everything for the seven-minute runtime, ask yourself the bigger question about whether you could ask for help, whether you could be there for someone who needs help, or pick up on the signs when someone close to you is struggle. Important and must watch for the awareness created, needed to be discussed.

Wake is a must watch short film, easily one of most important of the year.

Evil at the Door (2022) Movie Review ‘A Purge Wannabe

Evil at the Door – A Purge Wannabe

 

Director: Kipp Tribble

Writer: Kipp Tribble (Screenplay)

Starring: Bruce Davison, John James, Andrea Sweeney Blanco, Richard Siegelman, Matt O’Neill, Robert Allen Mukes, Scott Hamm, Sunny Doench, Kipp Tribble, Kenny Yates

Plot: One night every year the world sees an alarming surge in violent home invasions. This is no coincidence.

Runtime: 1 Hour 21 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Evil at the Door starts as Liz (Blanco) turns to her sister jess (Doench) for help after her life has fallen out of line again, staying with Jess and her husband Daniel (O’Neill) who isn’t happy to have her back in his home.

As the three look to go about their night, they find themselves targeted by a group of masked home invaders who have plans to commit horrific actions, as the tradition of this night, every year.

Thoughts on Evil at the Door

ThoughtsEvil at the Door is a horror film that will channel the Purge, with the idea that a group will commit violent crimes on a set day, while not on the big scale of the Purge movies, we dive into a secret society involved with it. How this unfolds, starts well, but then it seems to get stuck in the middle of nowhere, with a middle part of the film, where next to nothing seems to happen, while trying to build upon the group and their beliefs. Evil at the Door does sadly, fall into the type of film that wants to bring an edge to the story, only leaving everything we see feeling flat, only leaving the questions of, what was the point in one major plot point for the whole film. When it comes to the performances, we have Bruce Davison as the biggest name in the film, with his role literally being him sat at his desk reading a script into a camera, filling the role of the leader of the group, giving instructions. It does feel like we are going to get some depth in the performances from Andrea Sweeney Blanco and Sunny Doench with the introduction, which does soon get forgotten once the invasion happens.

Final Thoughts Evil at the Door wants to world build, forgetting to dive deeper enough into its own story.

The Surprise Visit (2022) Movie Review ‘Not Enough Suspense’

The Surprise Visit – Not Enough Suspense

 

Director: Nick Lyon

Writer: Stephen Meier (Screenplay) Nathan Cowles, Serah Henesey (Story)

Starring: Eric Roberts, Serah Henesey, Rob Riordan, Johnny Santiago, Jacqu Vene, Tricia Hawn

Plot: A robbery goes wrong, leaving two young drug addicts to make a difficult decision: to give up, or to do the unthinkable.

Runtime: 1 Hour 26 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: The Surprise Visit starts when drug addicts Casey (Riordan) and Annabelle (Vene) learn they are expecting a baby, with Casey turning to his father Hugh (Roberts) for help, searching for a chance of a job working for his boss Mrs Dixon (Hawn).

Casey decides to talk Annabelle into breaking into the house while Mrs Dixon is away, only he is unaware that her daughter Juliette (Henesey) and husband Daniel (Santiago) have made a surprise visit.

Thoughts on The Surprise Visit

Characters & Performances – Casey is the drug addict man who learns he is about to become a father, he needs drugs to function, despite trying to get his father to give him a new life. He is the one that comes up with the idea to rob his father’s boss in an attempt to get his girlfriend a new life. Casey is very difficult to support, where he will always push Annabelle into doing what he thinks is best, no matter what. Annabelle is the pregnant girlfriend of Casey’s, she wants to get off the drugs for their child, constantly pushing but being left disappointed by Casey, who controls her every decision in life. She is always insulted by him, never given the space to think for herself. Juliette and Daniel are the couple who are visiting the home, that find themselves coming under attack from the intruders, needing to think of a way out, trying to show the pair the error of their ways. This isn’t a film that is going to get the praise for the performances, as nobody seems to feel like they are committed to the roles involved, with more about screaming at each other being the main part of the film.

StoryThe Surprise Visit follows a couple of drug addicts that break into a home in an attempt to get rich quick, only not everything goes to plan, as the home isn’t as empty as they first thought. This story will seem to focus more on the chase, rather than getting any suspense in what is unfolding. It is has the toxic relationship between Casey and Annabelle not getting addressed on the firmer level, which is difficult to watch, as we can all see how badly Casey is treating her. The story will feel flatter by the end, with an unsatisfying ending, which does feel like we could have wrapped things up a lot quicker.

ThemesThe Surprise Visit is a thriller that doesn’t seem to hit the tension or suspense it wants to, as most of the film is just the characters running around the woods, which the isolated location does create. The location is key to everything we see, with the luxury home being the reason why the thieves target the home.

Final Thoughts The Surprise Visit is a tensionless thriller, never building up the suspense it could.

Scream (2022) Movie Review ‘Blood Soaked Sequel’

Scream – Blood Soaked Sequel

 

Director: Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett

Writer: James Vanderbilt, Guy Busick (Screenplay)

Starring: Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, David Arquette, Marley Shelton, Melissa Barrera, Jenna Ortega, Dylan Minnette, Jack Quaid

Plot: Twenty-five years after the original series of murders in Woodsboro, a new killer emerges, and Sidney Prescott must return to uncover the truth.


Tagline – It’s Always Someone You Know

Runtime: 1 Hour 54 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Scream starts when a new group of school students Tara (Ortega), Wes (Minnette), Mindy (Brown), Liv (Ammar), Amber (Madison) and Chad (Gooding) find themselves getting targeted by a new Ghostface killer. Tara’s sister Sam (Barrera) returns from her time away, as the killer continues to attack.

With the attacks increasing, Dewey (Arquette) reluctantly looks to help, drawing Gail Weathers (Cox) and Sidney (Campbell) back to Woodsboro to face the new killer.

Thoughts on Scream

Characters & Performances – This is going to be slightly different to how I usually break down the characters, as I will look at the originals, or legacy characters in Sidney who has moved away from the area, started her own life, at last. She does return to offer help, much like Gail Weathers, they are both drawn back, we know how strong they are and how they will always fight. Dewey does have the more interesting story of the three. Dewey has become an outsider, still suffering from the injuries he got from the last out, almost a recluse within the town he protected. Bringing the big three back was always the draw, with all three doing a great job throughout.

Onto the new characters, Sam Carpenter takes the leading role, drawn back to Woodsboro after Tara’s attack, she is holding a secret that has kept her away, while trying to get to the bottom of everything that has been happening. This is where we get the connection side of things, Wes is the son of Judy Hicks, the plucky sheriff from the last film, Mindy and Chad are twins that fill in Mindy’s side of things, the expert in horror, while Chad is the not so typical jock figure, that we have seen constantly twisted through the years. Liv is a girlfriend of Chad’s who does seem like more of the outsider of the friends, while Amber is the one wanting to keep everyone together through the incidents. When it comes to these characters, we do get a generational thing, which seems more focused on bragging about not caring and even wanting to be involved in what happens with the killings, they don’t tend to get enough development about them. It is hard to see any of the new cast standing out on the same levels as the originals, which is more to certain lack of screen time given to the ones we could see more from.

StoryScream will bring the action back to Woodsboro once again, with a new Ghostface killer looking to pick off a group of friends, bringing the originals back to face a new killer with an unknown motivation. Scream will bring the teenage characters into the new generations of young people who think they are above being horror victims and believe their own opinions are more important than anyone else’s, forcing them to show how they are becoming tired with decisions in movies, while being reckless in life. Like seriously, why would people have wild parties if their friends had been murdered by a known serial killer. Much like any Scream sequel, we do get a theme in the story, where we have had the sequel, trilogy, reboot before, we are now getting re-quell, a new term for a reboot and sequel trying to please fans. There is a side to the story, which is going to be interesting to see if the franchise will continue to grow on, as it is one that could take things in many different directions. We will have certain things said, that will have you scratching your head, as it seems to be written into the script that we know what happens in the Stab movies, which we don’t, even ignore mentions in previous films too.

ThemesScream is a horror slasher that will bring plenty of blood and gore to the table, not holding back and seemingly bring the directors trademark of the hand injury to life again. Returning the action to Woodsboro helps, showing us how the town has looked to move on again, but will always be under the shadow of the previous attacks. The use of one key location does bring back the memories of the brilliance of the original.

Final Thoughts Scream is a great addition to the franchise, bringing new-life for a new generation.

Bae Wolf (2022) Movie Review ‘Fun Spin on a Fantasy Legend’

Bae Wolf – Fun Spin on a Fantasy Legend

 

Director: David Axe

Writer: David Axe (Screenplay) Darien Cavanaugh (Story)

Starring: Morgan Shaley Renew, Jennifer Hill, Aaron Blomberg, Josh Kern, Katie Langdale, Rachel Petsiavas

Plot: In the year 500 A.D., a jealous, decapitating monster terrorizes the drunken revelers of Heorot. A fearless princess goes in search of a hero who can save her people. But that hero guards a secret more dangerous than any monster.


Tagline – It takes a monster to fight a monster.

Runtime: 1 Hour 27 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Bae Wolf starts when a fearless princess Freawaru (Renew) goes in search for help for her town’s monster problem, a Grendel (Kern), who has been killing the residents before walking away like nothing has happened.

As Freawaru searches for help, she meets Beowulf (Hill) and her men that have been fighting monsters roaming the land, using the stories behind them, as a way to get into village, not being prepared for what Grendel is to the village.

Thoughts on Bae Wolf

ThoughtsBae Wolf is a fantasy movie that will look to bring a different spin on the Beowulf legend, one that we have seen put to the bring screen a couple of times already in recent years, this time bringing a more grounded reality to everything going on within the world. Bae Wolf will bring us new visions of the character involved in the Grendel story, needing to find a way to win the battle, while not being afraid story and turn the legend into a mix of human involvement behind the legends. Bae Wolf is a film that is happy to embrace the B-Movie levels of the film, not taking too much serious, which might well hold things back, but then it also adds in an extra lighter side to everything we see.

Final Thoughts Bae Wolf is a fun low budget fantasy, accepting the stories in a new light.