Blood Craft (2019)

Director: James Cullen Bressack

Writer: James Cullen Bressack, Madeleine Wade (Screenplay)

Starring: Madeleine Wade, Augie Duke, Michael Welch, Dave Sheridan, Mark Rolston, Dominique Swain

 

Plot: Two sisters who suffered abuse as children at the hands of their sadistic father decide, after his death, to use witchcraft to bring his spirit back to get revenge.


Tagline – How far would you go for revenge?

Runtime: 1 Hour 34 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Disturbing Horror Revenge

 

Story: Blood Craft starts when a stripper Grace (Wade) gets news of her abusive father’s death forcing her to return home to see her sister Serena (Duke) and face the memories from their past, with Minister father (Sheridan) and their mother Hilde (Swain) who was terminally ill when they grew up, but did teach the girls the early stages of witch craft.

Serena talks Grace into using their witchcraft to bring their father back to life they can punish his spirit for what he made the girls do when they were growing up.

 

Thoughts on Blood Craft

 

Characters – Grace is the eldest daughter, she left the abuse, heading off into the world, turned to stripping, she is making a health living. With the news her father has died, she returns home to face the nightmares of her past, to confront her father’s spirit. She has managed to hide away most of the abuse in her life. Serena never managed to escape their father’s abuse, she has worked on ways of getting back at him, which involves witchcraft, only this will see her talk Grace into turning to these arts, as she doesn’t forget any of the abuse they suffered.

PerformancesMadeleine Wade in the leading role gives us a wonderful performance of a lady haunted by her past, not wanting to enter her past, living the best way she can after a life of trauma. Augie Duke brings us a character that does remain calm through the situation the character has been through. Michael Welch does take on a dual role at times, neither does he get to show any true determination. Dominique Swain might be the big name draw, but her role is only in the supporting role not getting enough time even though her scenes are big impact.

StoryThe story here follows two sisters that want to make the spirit of their abusive father pay for what he once did to them, it involves witchcraft, which shows how adults can look to deal with abuse. The dealing with abuse is easily the highlight of the story’s quality because it shows how two different adults have dealt with it and shows just how much damage it can have on the victims. Mental health has been used in horror before and always makes it one of the more powerfully elements from the real world. when it comes to the revenge side of the film it can be seen as something different because it asks the question on how to deal with revenge on the dead? The story is also filled with plenty of twists along the way, which surprise and become even more disturbing along the way.

HorrorThe horror in the film comes from dealing with the real world abuse the sisters have experienced and how they are planning to confront it. We do get elements of witchcraft which works, though isn’t truly as scary as it could have been.

SettingsThe film is set in one location, the house where the sisters grew up, suffered their abuse, it keeps the problems they are dealing with in house, which is what is need for them to confront them.

Special EffectsThe effects are simple enough, we don’t get many, but the ones we get are used we enough.


Scene of the Movie –
The morning after.

That Moment That Annoyed Me There was a lot more to process than I was expecting.

Final ThoughtsThis is a horror that digs deep with the emotional factors, it tackles real-world problems and shows the extremes two people would go to confront them.

 

Overall: Shocking and Disturbing.

Rating

 

 

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The 6th Friend (2018)

Director: Letia Clouston

Writer: Letia Clouston, Jamie Bernadette (Screenplay)

Starring: Jamie Bernadette, Chantelle Albers, Dominique Swain, Jessica Morris, Tania Nolan, David Villada, Monique Rosario

 

Plot: Six college best friends throw their own private graduation party that goes terribly wrong when an uninvited guest arrives. Five years later, the girls gather once again and endure a night of far more horror and bloodshed.


Tagline – how far would you go for your best friend?

Runtime: 1 Hour 25 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Horror Fans Enjoy the Slasher

 

Story: The 6th Friend starts when six college friends Joey (Bernadette), Melissa (Albers), Heather (Swain), Katie (Morris), Sahara (Nolan) and Becca (Rosario) who have reunited after a traumatic experience while high on drugs, the group come back together to help each other move on with their lives, only for them all to be suffering with their own problems.

The night takes a dramatic turn when the past comes back to haunt the women and they must now fight to survive against a masked killer, one they believe to be waiting them since the original traumatic night.

 

Thoughts on The 6th Friend

 

Characters – Joey is one of the six women, she is the least interested in the reunion because has dealt with the night in her own way, never wanting to face the reality of that night she is forced to when a killer comes back for the friends. She takes charge while others panic and her decision seems to be the one the friends lean towards. Melissa is the one that bought the friends back together, she has become a celebrity because of the previous events, it is her family home where the women are spending the weekend, though she is the first to lose control once they face the killer. The remaining four women are Heather, Katie, Sahara and Becca each have their own traits to make them be their own characters even if they do fall into the generic supporting figures.

PerformancesWhen it comes to the performances our lead is Jamie Bernadette who also co-wrote the screenplay, we see Jamie deliver another strong leading performance fitting in the final girl figure that we have gotten to know in the slasher genre. Chantelle Albers as the arranger of the big reunion is strong too because of the range she must show, playing the figure that is used to the spotlight. The remain women are solid in their roles and show good chemistry for the friendship between the women.

StoryThe story follows six friends that head out for a reunion five years after a traumatic night it soon turns sour when a masked killer from their past arrives and they must fight to survive. This does fit the slasher genre well for a story line, it is the additions which do give this story another edge, because we get to see how after the first event the women have raised to celebrity status, which reflects how the modern world is treating the victims. This is a horror so, imagine we would get twists and this is full of them, even if certain moments of the film you feel you are about to put your finger on what is going on things take a change.

HorrorThe slasher genre is one of the easiest to watch in the horror sub-genre, it has a generic formula which this film does follow, until the final act which needs to be different to make the film stand out.

SettingsThe film is set in a cabin in the woods, with no where to run and with the cars disabled, we get isolation for the characters involved.

Special EffectsThe effects used are strong for the most part, I liked how the killer’s appearance comes off, even if certain injuries are not at the strongest level.


Scene of the Movie –
The final act.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The goodnight process.

Final ThoughtsThis is a good fun slasher, that offers a twist you won’t see coming, even if certain moments can feel like you have seen before.

 

Overall: Slasher film you can enjoy.

Rating

 

 

Minutes to Midnight (2018)

Director: Christopher Ray

Writer: Victoria Dadi, Christopher M Don (Screenplay)

Starring: William Baldwin, Richard Grieco, Bill Moseley, Viva Bianca, Christopher Judge, John Hennigan, Dominique Swain, Mercy Malick

 

Plot: On the cusp of New Year’s Eve, seven friends and a mysterious backpacker converge at a desolate ski lodge in the mountains when they are systematically hunted down by ruthless masked men with a cryptic agenda.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 31 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Bloodbath

 

Story: Minutes to Midnight starts when seven friends led by Sophia (Fletcher) head up to a ski lodge for New Year’s Eve for a party, they are joined by backpacker Travis Crenna (Hennigan) who is in search for his lost brother in the same area. The mountains are not a safe area though with Gimple (Moseley) and his murderous group collecting victims to torture.

When an impending storm puts the party on hold in the eyes of Ranger Taso (Judge) and Sheriff Wyatt (Grieco) who look to keep the town’s people safe and soon the night turns into battle to survive.

 

Thoughts on Minutes to Midnight

 

Characters – Mr Walters runs the town, he lives an isolated life when not working with his team, though he does seem to know more about the town’s past than lets on. Sheriff Wyatt is trying to keep the town safe by being fair to anyone that could be in suspect. Ranger Taso supports the Sheriff in trying to get the town’s people to safety when the storm start making its way towards the town. Travis Crenna is a stranger in town searching for his lost brother, he is trained in survival and gets involved in trying to learn the truth about fighting off the people in the woods. Chloe is one of the victims captured while trying to make her way to the cabin. Gimple is the leader of the group that is capturing victims in the woods around the mountain range and soon we learn how many people he is working with. We have a group of young people that are out for partying who are here for the main parts of the drinking, sex and bad decisions, in a strange way these are the characters we most likely didn’t need in the film.

PerformancesThe performances are good through the film, John Hennigan is the stand out as he continues to make a name for himself away from the wrestling ring. The performance can be divided elsewhere between the well-known actors including horror icon Bill Moseley, sci-fi icon Christopher Judge and Will Baldwin who are good and help draw the audience in. the other half of the performances can look at the group of friends who again are good and generally are involved in a lot more scenes than most of the iconic stars.

StoryThe story, well before we get into the story, I must ask you a question, how complicated do you want slashers to be? Well if you answer not very, this story will not be for you. The story follows a group of party animals who are about to start getting picked off by killers, which is fine, then we add in a backstory for motive which only gets glossed over for the most part, a story the party animals would never know about in the first place and we end up in a position where we have plenty of bodies turning up. I do however believe the way the villains are introduced was one of the highlights of the story and help the story feel like an enjoyable one for horror fans.

Action/HorrorWhen we look at the action in this film you get a hint you might be getting when you know one of the stars is a wrestler, we have good combat and with the weapons the villains use we get to see plenty of great blood-filled moments. The horror in this film is a slasher at heart, it has the cliched characters and killers which will leave bodies everywhere.

SettingsThe film takes place in the woods around a mountain range which keeps them from easy rescue.

Special EffectsThe effects are practical and when the bodies start piling up the kills mixed with the weapons look brutal through the film.


Scene of the Movie –
The weapons are great and original.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Certain slasher clichés are overly focused on.

Final ThoughtsIf you want to see a fun bloody slasher this one is going to be for you, we have plenty of bloodshed, bodies piling up and unique looking weapons for the killers to use.

 

Overall: Great addition to the slasher world.

Rating