Movie Reviews 101 Midnight Halloween Horror – The Cottage (2008)

Director: Paul Andrew Williams

Writer: Paul Andrew Williams (Screenplay)

Starring: Andy Serkis, Reece Shearsmith, Jennifer Ellison, Steven O’Donnell, James Bierman


Plot: In a remote part of the countryside, a bungled kidnapping turns into a living nightmare for four central characters when they cross paths with a psychopathic farmer and all hell breaks loose.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Fun Horror Comedy


Story: The Cottage starts when David (Serkis) and Peter (Shearsmith) have kidnapped Tracey (Ellison) taking her to a remote farmhouse. The two are brother’s looking to make a quick quid with this half assed attempt with the kidnapping.

When everything stars to go wrong it doesn’t take long for a bigger threat to come after the unlikely group who along with Tracey’s step-brother Andrew (O’Donnell) must survive against a deadly psychopathic farmer.


Thoughts on The Cottage


Characters/PerformanceDavid is the brother with a plan, he wants the money to get away from this life, Peter is filled with panic about the kidnapping not wanting to upset his wife back home. Tracey is the victim who is tougher than both the men involved in the kidnapping.

Performance wise, Andy Serkis is good as the deadpan lead through the film, while Reece Shearsmith is good in what you would expect to be the leading lady, constantly screaming. Jennifer Ellison goes against her type cast of a dumb blonde by being a tough blonde who take nonsense.

StoryWhen looking at the basics of the story it does come down to a kidnapping gone wrong with deadly consequences. It is something we have seen before and it is a good formula for horror comedy so I can’t find anything bad with this aspect of the film, I do also like the surprise that you are left to wonder just who will get killed next with no one being safe.

Comedy/HorrorThe comedy is good in this film we have great chemistry between Peter and David which add to the laughs with their hapless attempt to kidnap Tracey along with the reactions to the killer. The horror is generic to say the least, it is just a disfigured killer trying to kill the main characters in a gore filled way, nothing to fancy.

SettingsHaving the film set on the remote farm comes off well because it shows a good idea for location of the kidnapping as well as a god location for the killer to hunt in.

Special EffectsThe special effects are mostly all practical and all come off very well to add to the extra gore needed for the film.

Final ThoughtsThis is a good horror comedy that doesn’t take any part of the film too serious with over the top kills and colourful characters.


Overall: Easy to watch horror comedy.




The Phantom of the Opera (2004)

casting card


Plot: A young soprano becomes the obsession of a disfigured musical genius who lives beneath the Paris Opéra House.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Good Opera Adaptation


Story: The Phantom of the Opera starts at an auction at the theatre before we see Madame Giry (Richardson) flashback to the times when the mythical phantom turned up. We see the theatre being sold to Firmin (Hinds) and Andre (Callow) as well as them losing their star attraction Carlotta (Driver).

Facing huge financial loss on the first night they must find a replacement and Christine (Rossum) save the shows with her mesmerizing performance that even caught the attention of the Phantom (Butler). The Phantom takes Christine to his home under the theatre to confess his love for her ability while Raoul (Wilson) must wait another time to win her heart.

When Christine witness with the Phantom he starts demanding how the next show will be run or a disaster will fall on the theatre. While his obsession continues to grow their lives will clash to decide their own futures.

The Phantom of the Opera is one of the most classically loved operas of all time and this is an honest version to make it into a film style adding the effects you could never do on stage. This is one of the love stories that will always be put on the same levels as Romeo and Juliet which is always is one I would like to think people would have heard off. Having never seen but knowing the basic story I feel this does everything really well that people will enjoy.


Actor Review


Gerard Butler: The Phantom is running the theatre from the shadows demanding the managers follow his rules while becoming fascinated by the next big opera singer Christine and making her the star of the show. He is scared to come out of the shadows because of his disfigurement and isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty to get what he wants. Gerard is great in this role even if part of the singing comes off  compared to the rest of the cast.phantom

Emmy Rossum: Christine is the ballet girl given the chance to become the lead in the opera where she stuns the crowd and the Phantom who demands she will always be the lead in the opera. She goes on to have a romance with her old friend Raoul which leads to an engagement but the Phantom has other ideas. Emmy is great in this role where she stands up against the more established stars.

Patrick Wilson: Raoul has returned to the city where he has fallen in love with the beautiful Christine and after he wins her heart he must find a way to stop the Phantom taking over the life. Patrick is great in this role showing he has musical side to his abilities.

Miranda Richardson: Madame Giry runs the ballet side of the theatre who has a past with the Phantom being the one that bought him into the theatre in the first place and it is her one of many looking back at the tragedy at the theatre. Miranda is good in this supporting role.

Support Cast: The Phantom of the Opera has brilliant supporting cast that make you are in the opera with the rest of the cast.

Director Review: Joel SchumacherJoel gives us some beautiful shot moments that bring this opera to life for us all as a treat.


Musical: The Phantom of the Opera is one of the most famous ever, and this does it all justice.

Romance: The Phantom of the Opera brings us into a romantic story where we see how obsession can become dangerous.

Settings: The Phantom of the Opera has stunning settings for everything to take place in making us feel like we are part of the film.
Special Effects
: The Phantom of the Opera has great effects to make everything happen through the film.

Suggestion: The Phantom of the Opera is one for all the musical fans to enjoy watching, if you are not of fan of musicals this will become hard to enjoy. (Musical Fans Watch)


Best Part: Settings look fantastic.

Worst Part: Slightly long.

Romantic Moment: Final Act.


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: Nominated for 3 Oscars

Budget: $70 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 23 Minutes

Tagline: Listen to the Music of the Night


Overall: Spectacular musical