Cruel Intention (1999)

Director: Roger Kumble

Writer: Roger Kumble (Screenplay) Choderlos de Laclos (Novel)

Starring: Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe, Reese Witherspoon, Selma Blair, Louise Fletcher, Joshua Jackson, Eric Mabius

 

Plot: Two vicious step-siblings of an elite Manhattan prep school make a wager: to deflower the new headmaster’s daughter before the start of term.


Tagline – What you can’t have, you can’t resist.

Runtime: 1 Hour 37 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Darkly Delicious

 

Story: Cruel Intentions starts as the elite prep school step siblings Kathryn (Gellar) and Sebastian (Phillippe) are planning their next conquests in making the fellow students or authority figures pay for going against them. Kathryn wants to destroy new student Cecile (Blair) for dating her ex-girlfriend, while Sebastian wants to break the new headmaster’s daughter Annette’s (Witherspoon) belief about waiting for sex before marriage.

We watch how the two navigate their way through the elite to achieve their goals only for Sebastian to start to change from his seductive ways.

 

Thoughts on Cruel Intentions

 

Characters – Kathryn is the two faced elite society girl, two the parents she is the good polite guide for their daughters through the prep school, with her brother and friends she plays people however she wants to get things done, she holds grudges and has power over her step-brother, to help her enjoy seeing people fall. Sebastian has a reputation that has seen him go through the girls at the school, he gets what he wants but is bored of the easy girls that can be pushed around. He sets his sights on the new headmaster’s daughter which will give him a new look on life. Annette is the headmaster’s daughter that has sworn off sex before marriage, she is determined not to let Sebastian take advantage of her and break her code, knowing the truth about his past.

PerformancesSarah Michelle Gellar was known for her bad ass Buffy the Vampire Slayer when this movie came out, this performance broke her typecast and showed that she could do a much darker role. Ryan Phillippe is wonderful in this role, you can see how he plans to get ahead at every step of the way believing his confident character. Reese Witherspoon bought us the innocent character we now know her for, we need her to be strong, she is and that look makes her look the part perfectly. This is easily one of he best cast movies of recent years.

StoryThe story takes us into the elite prep school life where the kids are free enough to be planning their next sexual conquest because money is no longer an issue for them. Seeing how the story plans out is interesting from early on to the finish as the plans between the characters and how the step-siblings manipulate the people in their lives is twisted. The pace of the story is great too, it never feels like it lets up from start to finish. It does however show how stupid rich kids can be because they have never learnt morals.

RomanceThe romance in this film is a complete mix, we get to see how romance can be used just for sex and how it can change people to become better people.

SettingsThe New York setting is perfect for this movie, it shows how the elite school kids can get up to the most pointless behaviour because of boredom and belief they have the power over anyone.


Scene of the Movie –
The fight.

That Moment That Annoyed Me These kids never go to school.

Final ThoughtsThis is a wonderful dark romantic thriller, that uses the music perfectly, has brilliant performances and is easily one of the most watchable films out of the late 90s.

 

Overall: Special movie that hasn’t aged a day.

Rating

 

 

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Mum and Dad (2018)

Director: Brian Taylor

Writer: Brian Taylor (Screenplay)

Starring: Nicolas Cage, Selma Blair, Anne Winters, Lance Henriksen, Joseph D Reitman, Rachel Melvin, Olivia Crocicchia

 

Plot: A teenage girl and her little brother must survive a wild 24 hours during which a mass hysteria of unknown origins causes parents to turn violently on their own kids.


Runtime: 1 Hour 23 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Great Fun

 

Story: Mum and Dad starts as we meet the Ryan family father Brent (Cage), mother Kendall (Blair) and bratty children, teenager Carly (Winters) and young Josh (Arthur) who seem like a normal dysfunctional family as the parents must deal with their kids ignorance and poor behaviour.

Today is different as the parents for the whole town have become infected by a virus which causes them to go into a rage as they look to kill their own children, Carly must take her first steps of responsibility and protect Josh from their own parents who are hell bent on murdering them.

 

Thoughts on Mum and Dad

 

Characters – Brent is the father of the family, on the verge of a mid-life crisis, sports car and man cave in the works to go alongside the job he now hates but must continue you. Kendall is the mother of the family, becoming distant from her daughter, facing the reality she can’t go back to the job she once loved, waiting to just become old now. Carly is the teenage daughter of the family, she is rebellious stealing from her mother, getting high and sneaking out, not really someone you can support through the film. Josh is the youngest member of the family, he is always causing trouble, never seemingly going to school either. This is one of the problems of the film, the kids are pains in the arses and you find yourself rooting for the parents over their kids.

PerformancesNicolas Cage is fantastic to watch in this movie, he needs to be way over the top and he gets to go into full cage mode here. Selma Blair is good in her role, she gets the most conflicted during everything going on and you can see in her performance how she is reacting to each moment. Anne Winters is good, but never becomes the character we need to care enough about.

StoryThe story uses a mix of what The Crazies and The Purge has, while the crime isn’t legal, it follows the idea that this is a virus that only seems to last for a day causing people, parents to turn into murders after their own children. This does bring a nice spin onto plenty of genres and gives us an action romp without explaining everything going on, just watching how the kids must find a way to survive, nothing too difficult to watch.

Horror/ThrillerThe horror comes from the idea that parents are trying to murder their children, which works because if it being horrific to think about happening.

SettingsMost of the film takes place inside the home as the parents are trying to get to their kids to kill, it shows how home can become the dangerous place when parents snap.

Special Effects –  The effects work well for the film, used as and when with most of the kills or attacks happening off camera.

Scene of the Movie – Full Cage moments.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Brent attacking David doesn’t make sense to what is going on in the story.

Final ThoughtsThis is an enjoyable horror comedy that pushes the limits of what we can show on film, but it works when you want to watch something so, over the top and mad.

 

Overall: Fun, Crazy and Completely bonkers.

Rating

 

 

Movie Reviews 10 Midnight Horror – w Delta z (2007)

wazDirector: Tom Shankland

Writer: Clive Bradley (Screenplay)

Starring: Stellan Skarsgard, Melissa George, Ashley Walters, Tom Hardy, Paul Kaye, John Sharian, Selma Blair, Sally Hawkins

 

Plot: A calculating killer coerces a detective to pay for his previous mistakes.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Gritty Crime Horror

 

Story: w Delta z starts as a rookie detective Helen Westcott (George) get her first crime scene where she works with seasoned veteran Eddie Argo (Skarsgard) who knows the streets like the back of his hand. When the bodies start piling up the detectives figure they are after a serial killer who is carving WAZ into the bodies.

When Eddie learns that it is Jean Lerner (Blair) behind the crimes it becomes clear who he is targeting and why in what is a careful thought out revenge on gang led by Pierre Jackson (Hardy) who brutally attacked her years before. The race is on to stop the body count getting to high but the truth will come out.

W Delta z is a crime horror thriller that follows the lines of the ‘Saw’ franchise but having a killer that pushes the limits of what a body can handle. For the crime side and revenge side of this movie this is all very effective on the negative side we just don’t get enough suggestion of anyone else’s involvement as we learn the killer very early. While the film is very bloody most of these does happen off camera which does help with us trying to deal with the horror involved. This is a dark story that can be enjoyed by the horror fans out there.

 

Actor Review

 

Stellan Skarsgard: Eddie Argo is the seasoned detective that has to work with the rookie tracking down a serial killer, it isn’t long before he learns of his previous connection to the killer. Stellan is good as the grizzled older cop.

Melissa George: Helen Westcott is the rookie detective thrown into this new case with a new partner. She has to learn about the departments secrets to uncover the truth about what is happening. Melissa is good but sadly falls to just a supporting role in the second half of the film.

Selma Blair: Jean Lerner was a victim of a horrendous home invasion gang rape attack that has been planning her revenge on everyone involved for years. Her plan is to put each person involved in the attack through the same decision she had to face. Selma makes for a great villain in the horror genre unlike many we have seen before.

Tom Hardy: Pierre Jackson is the leader of the gang who did the attack, he is psychotic with how he picks acts willing to shot first killing anyone who gets in his way. Tom is solid in this role which is only a supporting role before he became a bigger name.

Support Cast: W Delta z has only a couple of other important characters who are victims of the killer as well as police involved in the original crime.

Director Review: Tom ShanklandTom gives us a very dark crime horror that does come close to matching Seven and Saw.

 

Crime: W Delta z follows our detectives looking for a serial killer that is also out to get revenge for a crime they were a victim off.

Horror: W Delta z gives us a serial killer that doesn’t know when to stop until they get everything they want.

Thriller: W Delta z keeps us guessing to where the story will end up going by throwing us straight into the first murder.

Settings: W Delta z makes each scene feel gritty from the wrong neighbourhood showing what the killer sees as the low-lives who are her victims.
Special Effects
: W Delta z had great effects when it comes to the body horror going on through the film.

Suggestion: W Delta z is one for all the horror fans out there to watch, if you were a fan of Saw or Seven this is for you. (Horror Fans Watch)

 

Best Part: Killer’s motives.

Worst Part: Not enough mystery about who the killer is.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Similar Too:

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $5 Million

Runtime: 1 hour 44 Minutes

Tagline: Would you kill the one you love to save yourself from death?

 

Overall: Twisted, gritty and dark crime horror film

Ratingcard

 

 

Guillermo Del Toro Weekend – Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)

logoDirector: Guillermo del Toro

Writer: Guillermo del Toro, Mike Mignola (Screenplay) Mike Mignola (Comic Book)

Starring: Ron Perlman, Selma Blair, Doug Jones, John Alexander, Luke Goss, Anna Walton

Plot: The mythical world starts a rebellion against humanity in order to rule the Earth, so Hellboy and his team must save the world from the rebellious creatures.

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

Verdict: Fair Tale Comic Book

Story: Hellboy II: The Golden Army starts with a quick recap on how Hellboy came about, before entering into a time period between the two events 1955. we see Professor Bloom (Hurt) (Returning after dying in the first film) telling a young Hellboy a fairy tale about the elves in their battles and the birth of The Golden Army. The story follows that a crown that can control the Golden Army is separated into three, one for the humans and the other two spilt between the Prince and Princess.

Back to present day we meet Prince Nuada (Goss) who comes to Earth to reclaim part of the crown given to the humans. Hellboy (Perlman) is still getting himself in trouble by being witnessed again, but he is struggling to cope with his new relationship with Liz (Blair).

When Prince Nuada decides to declare war on the humans he must first kill his father before leading his people into battle, he must find his sister Princess Nuala (Walton) who has the final part the crown. Hellboy and his team with their new leader Johann Krauss must learn to work together to stop the elf war.

Hellboy II: The Golden Army is by far the most unique comic book films I have seen, I loved the full blown fairy tale side to the story that made the villain almost the most important because he is actually fighting for what he believes to be right. Unlike most films were there is evil is all about destruction this one wanted power. I do think this is the most underrated comic book of recent years. The only negative side to this film would be that the character bought into make a future character no longer exists in the film. (8/10)

Actor Review

Ron Perlman: Hellboy is still struggling with the loss of his father as well a struggling with his relationship with Liz. He must work with a new leader who he doesn’t get along with as thy enter the elf under world to save the world again. Hellboy also tries his hardest to be accepted by the world who starts to question his motives. Ron continues to shine in this role using his flair throughout the film. (8/10)hllboy

Selma Blair: Liz Sherman is the love interest of Hellboy who ha the ability to turn into fire, she makes for great partner in combat as Hellboy can’t gt hurt by fire but she wants to live a normal life too. Selma does a good job building upon her character from the first outing. (7/10)liz

Luke Goss: Prince Nuada is the elf prince who wants to go back to war with the humans from the elf underworld. He wants to take his place back believing the humans are no longer worthy of walking the Earth. Luke does a good job in this role making for a good villain. (7/10)prince

Anna Walton: Princess Nuala is the twin sister of Prince Nuada who still wants to respect the ways of her father and must team up with Hellboy to prevent her brother from committing his war. Anna does a god job making for a god supporting character addition. (7/10)princess

Support Cast: Hellboy II: The Golden Army builds on the supporting characters added with brilliant fantasy characters bought into the elf world as well as the returning characters working with Hellboy.

Director Review: Guillermo del ToroGuillermo brings us his fantasy element to a comic book making him the absolute perfect choice to direct. (10/10)

Action: Hellboy II: The Golden Army is filled with action pack battles against different fantasy figures. (8/10)

Fantasy: Hellboy II: The Golden Army puts us in the middle of a battle between elves and human giving this a real fantasy feel throughout. (9/10)

Settings: Hellboy II: The Golden Army creates a mix of real settings and fantasy underworld settings that make this a much more beautiful film. (9/10)
Special Effects: Hellboy II: The Golden Army brings us stunning effects to create the alternative world for the action to take place. (9/10)

Suggestion: Hellboy II: The Golden Army is one all comic book fans just have to watch. (Watch)

Best Part: Getting drunk.

Worst Part: Though John is written out easily enough I feel his character still had something to add to the story.

Action Scene Of The Film: Planet creature in Brooklyn.

Funniest Scene: Locker room fight.

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: There is constant talk of a sequel.

Post Credits Scene: No

Oscar Chances: Nominated for one Oscar

Box Office: $75 Million

Budget: $85 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours

Tagline: From the visionary director of Pan’s Labyrinth

Trivia: David Hyde Pierce did the voice of Abe Sapien in Hellboy (2004), while Doug Jonesplayed the physical part. For Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008), Jones also does the voice. The reason is because the producers hoped Pierce’s name would make the first film a box-office smash. But he refused to be credited because he felt Abe Sapien was Jones’ work, and as such did no promotions or interviews, or even attended the premiere.

Overall: The most unique and brilliant comic book film.

Rating 85

Guillermo Del Toro Weekend – Hellboy (2004)

lgoDirector: Guillermo del Toro

Writer: Guillermo del Toro, Peter Briggs (Screenplay) Mike Mignola (Comic Books)

Starring: Ron Perlman, John Hurt, Selma Blair, Rupert Evans, Karel Roden, Jeffrey Tambor, Doug Jones, Brian Steele

Plot: A demon, raised from infancy after being conjured by and rescued from the Nazis, grows up to become a defender against the forces of darkness.

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

Verdict: Great Dark Comic Book Film

Story: Hellboy starts in 1944 Scotland as we follow young soldier Trevor Bruttenholm as an experiment involving the paranormal is being performed by the Russian’s while our American’s are trying to stop it. Grigori Rasputin (Roden) plans to open the gates of hell and releases a demon that will help the Russian’s win the war. While the American’s do prevent the event happening the gate was open long enough for a baby demon Hellboy to come through and befriend Trevor who ends up becoming his father.

Fast-forward to the present time 2004 (year of release) where Hellboy is a myth, a cover up in America. Rasputin is bough back from the dead by his loyal followers, while Hellboy (Perlman) gets a new partner John Myers (Evans) who receives the tour from professor Bruttenholm known as Broom (Hurt). Hellboy is about to come up against the very man who bought him into the world Rasputin who is long thought of to be dead while facing personal problems with his old flame Liz (Blair) and his father Broom.

Hellboy is a comic book film that is different to everything we have know, it focuses a lot more on the paranormal side of effects. Even though this comes off with similar styling as the comic book film it doesn’t have a super strong villain where it tests the hero to make the right decision. This film is over ten years old and I can safely say I would rather watch this than most of the Avengers universe films. This is fun action pack and just enjoyable without losing the darkness in the story. (8/10)

Actor Review

Ron Perlman: Hellboy is the demon who comes through a portal where he spends his life fighting the paranormal for the Americans. He is the anti hero we haven’t seen in comic book films before he just wants to be accepted by has to spend his time in hiding. Ron did a great job as the anti hero using his charm and physical image to make a great performance. (8/10)hellboy

John Hurt: Trevor Bruttenholm is the man who raised Hellboy as well as running the paranormal investigation unit for the American government. He always protected Hellboy through the worst times and has know searched for his replacement due to his terminal illness. John gives a good performance in the mentor role which works for the film. (7/10)brom

Selma Blair: Liz Sherman is the former member of the team who is trying to live a normal life but when her abilities flair up again she returns to fight along with Hellboy to stop the gates of hell opening. Selma was a good supporting character and love interest with our hero. (7/10)iz

Rupert Evans: John Myers is the new recruit sent to the paranormal section where he must learn the ways as Hellboy is picky about who he works he proves to be a good ally even if they don’t see eye to eye to start with. Rupert does a solid job but doesn’t seem to get the character development he needed to have. (6/10)jon

Karel Roden: Grigori Rasputin is the man who released Hellboy that now wants to continue bringing his vision of pure evil to the world from beyond the grave. Karel does a good job in the villain role that doesn’t rely on strength rather than brains. (7/10)rasputin

Support Cast: Hellboy has a supporting cast that includes the supporting villains that has one assassin that is very cool but otherwise most of the support cast is the disposable characters.

Director Review: Guillermo del Toro – Guillermo dos a great job directing this dark comic book film that really works making this entertaining but still unique to the genre. (8/10)

Action: Hellboy has some very good over the top action but doesn’t have a true stand out moment though. (7/10)

Fantasy: Hellboy brings us the into the world where demons are just past the other dimension. (8/10)

Sci-Fi: Hellboy brings us into a future world where the end could come from something different. (8/10)

Settings: Hellboy uses settings you would expect to see with the genre being used. (6/10)
Special Effects: Hellboy has great effects throughout that help work with the story. (8/10)

Suggestion: Hellboy is one for all comic book fans to enjoy because it just feels different the superhero films. (Comic Book Fans Watch)

Best Part: Hellboy is a great character.

Worst Part: I feel like it would have a bigger following if it came out now.

Action Scene Of The Film: Train chase.

Funniest Scene: Liz and John’s date with Hellboy watching

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Yes has one.

Post Credits Scene: There is one.

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $59 Millions

Budget: $66 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 2 Minutes

Tagline: Give Evil Hell

Trivia: Doug Jones‘s (Abe Sapien) voice was dubbed by David Hyde Pierce, but Pierce refused a credit, because he felt that Abe was entirely Doug’s creation and did not wish to detract from his performance.

Overall: What the comic book genre needed, something different.

Rating 80