Posts made in June 2017

Cult of Chucky: Trailer

By

Frank Ford

The trailer for Cult of Chucky dropped online today. Have you seen it? If not, you need to stop reading right now and click on the video below!

Cult of Chucky picks up after the events of Curse of Chucky, finding Nina (Fiona Dourif) now in a mental hospital trying to come to terms with Chucky’s murderous rampage. But no one, including her psychologist, believes that Chucky (Brad Dourif – Fiona real-life father) was the one who committed the murders, thinking that Nina committed them instead.
But Chucky is very much alive and he’s ready to settle not only the score with Nina, but a face from his past…Andy Barclay (Alex Vincent from Child’s Play, Child’s Play 2). But this time Chucky’s not alone and getting some extra help from his girlfriend Tiffany (Jennifer Tilly – Bride of Chucky, Seed of Chucky) who is now in the body of actress Jennifer Tilly.

Much like Curse of Chucky, Cult of Chucky seems to go back to its horror roots and for this, I’m very thankful.

After Child’s Play 3 (which was released in the 1991) the series seemed to be dead until it was revived with Ronny Yu’s Bride of Chucky. Bride of Chucky was more of a tongue planted firmly in cheek moment in the series, and played the dark comedy angle up more than any of the previous sequels had to that date. It was very self-aware movie, (a horror product of its time, post Scream),while adding something new with the addition of Tiffinay into the mix – Chucky’s homicidal girlfriend.

Seed of Chucky was to follow in 2005, and would take this angle of Chucky’s growing family one step further with the introduction of Glen/Glenda, Chucky’s confused kid.
I enjoyed Bride of Chucky a lot when I saw it in the theater in 1998; I thought it was fresh and fun; the shot in the arm that the Child’s Play series needed at that time. As for Seed of Chucky, I was not (and still am not) a huge fan of that movie. It has its moments that I enjoy – the opening good done all in Glen/Glenda’s POV. My biggest complaint with Seed is that it’s just boring, and the silliness and tongue and cheek quality that Bride of Chucky seemed to pull off effortlessly, had already outstayed its welcome in the series.

I wanted the Chucky I grew up with back…the scary Chucky that stalked my hallways and haunted my dreams.

Thankfully Don Mancini understood this and in Curse of Chucky, Mancini returned Chucky to his roots. Did I think that was possible? No. After five movies, I did not expect to be so scared watching another Chucky movie. But I was! I REALLY WAS SCARED!

Mancini had built the wait up for Chucky to strike so well that I nearly came out of my skin with anticipation. And the scene at the dinner table was amazingly done, with tension so thick one could hardly breath – who did Chucky poison? I also really liked that Mancini was able to tie all the movies together in one little line and didn’t bog the film down with exposition.

Will Cult of Chucky follow in the path of Curse of Chucky and be scary as hell? Once can only hope. But from the trailer, it looks like we are going to be in for another scary, wild ride with our favorite Good Guy Doll.

‘Friends to the end. Hi-de-ho, hahaha!’

Cult of Chucky hits Blu-Ray and DVD October 3rd 2017.

Pick up you copy here at The Crimson Screen Collectibles – preorders are now open at www.thecrimosnscreencollectibles.com

It Comes At Night: Review

By
Westley Smith

Going into It Comes At Night, I had little knowledge of the film, what it was about, or even who was in it, other than Joel Edgerton. I had not seen many previews of the film, other than a few clips on some of the social media outlets.

I thought it was best that I went into this movie with an open mind, without any outside influence to sway my judgement of the movie.

I’m glad I did because the trailers, what I saw of them anyway, really make this movies seem like a horror film when it is anything but. Now having seen the trailers after seeing the movie, I think I would have been pissed had I went in to it thinking it was a horror movie, when in actuality, it was a tale of survival in a world that has ended.

Joel Edgerton plays Paul, a dominating man who has locked he, his wife Sarah, (Carman Ejogo) and son Travis, (Kelvin Harrison, Jr.) away in their remote home in the middle of nowhere as the rest of the world falls victim to an unknown illness.

The film starts off with Travis’ grandfather, who has come down with this mysterious sickness that looks a lot like the Bubonic Plague; sores and blisters cover the man’s skin. Unable to do anything to help the man; he’s already on death doorstep, Paul and Travis take him out of the home (they have to wear masks and gloves around the infected or risk becoming infected themselves) and kill him. To help stop the spread of disease, they burn the body and bury it.

Shaken and rattled the family comes together that night, trying to stay strong, trying to survive the hardship of this new life.

That night Travis begins to have nightmares that something is trying to break into their home. When he comes to, he finds that his nightmare wasn’t just a nightmare, but reality when he’s suddenly woken up by Paul telling him there was someone in their home.

Scared and afraid that whoever is in their home is there to bring harm to them, the family rushes into action and ends up finding, Will (Christopher Abbot) in their house. He tries to tell them it was a mistake, but Paul, not taking any chances in fear for himself and his family’s safety, knocks Will out and ties him up to a tree, stripped of his clothes and shoes.

The next day, Paul questions Will and threatens to kill him if he thinks he’s lying. Will tells Paul that he was out looking for food and water, and that he left his wife and child to find supplies because they were running low. Will stumbled upon the house, and thinking that it was abandoned, he decided to break in. He also tells Paul that they have food: chickens, goats, and some canned goods that he was willing to share for some water.

Is Will telling the truth?

It Comes At Night is a story about the survival in trust. When trust is broken, in a dire situation, everything can come unraveled in a matter of seconds.

And that is exactly what happens.

The film was directed by Trey Edward Shults. Shults does a good job a balancing the tension between what is going on in the outside world (because there is something going on outside of the house, but we never get to know what it is; though it’s hinted at) and what is going on inside the house with the characters. He never really lets you in on who is, or is not, infected, nor how and when they become infected and what it can do to them – though again it is hinted at throughout the film.

 

 

 

 

What really stood out to me was the heavy, foreboding atmosphere of It Comes At Night and it’s fantastic cinematography. Most of the night scenes were lit with just lamps, giving those scenes this eerie oily look that made you wonder what was hiding in the shadows of our characters and maybe the outside world beyond the house in the woods – was there something supernatural going on?

There are only a handful of characters in the movie and because of this we are given a chance to get to know them and how they are going to try and survive this hellish new world, and each other. This is something else that Shults and the script does well; the characters are human, they have faults, good traits and bad, no one in the movie is perfect, which makes them all the more human when they are forced to act in the end – good or bad, their decisions are on their shoulders.

The film offers little in the way of hope. It is a downbeat and somewhat depressing movie about the horrors of surviving at all costs. There is no ray of sunshine to be found here and it is one thing that I really liked about It Comes At Night. Very rarely do we get a movie that makes you question how you would act if put in to a similar situation, and the consequences of those actions.

I really enjoyed Brian McOmber’s ominous, haunting score; it helped build the tension, drama and action in the movie well and seemed to fit perfectly in the setting of the film. It is a score worth checking out if you like ominous music, and can be listened to by itself, and enjoyed, without having to have seen the movie.

If you are going out this weekend to check out It Comes At Night, understand that you are not going to see a horror movie; you are seeing a movie about people trying to survive at all costs.

8 out of 10 stars.

Kill’em All: Blu-Ray/Film Review

By
Westley Smith

Kill’em All is the latest Jean-Claude Van Damme film to hit Blu-Ray and VOD yesterday, and since we here at The Crimson Screen Collectibles are huge fans of JCVD, we thought we’d review the film.

Kill’em All is directed by Peter Malota. You may not know the director’s name, but any fan of Van Damme’s films has seen Peter before; he’s been in several JCVD’s movies: Nowhere to Run, Universal Soldier, The Quest, and The Order. But most people will remember him as the cowboy boot, spur-wearing bad guy from Double Impact – his scene with Alex (JCVD) where he’s jumping in and out of the shadows is one of the best scenes in Double Impact.

Going into the movie, I was interested in Peter’s direction as this was his very first time at the helm of a film. My mind was running the gambit on how this film was going to turn out: good, bad, or…worse?

I had been following the film’s production since it was announced and was eager to see it (as I am with all of JCVD’s films) and was hoping for the best. The released stills for the movie looked good. The cast was impressive with Jean-Claude Van Damme, Peter Stormare, and Maria Conchita Alonzo headlining. And then I got to see the trailer and was blown away. My first reaction was “Wow! This is going to be a kick ass Van Damme movie”.

Peter’s direction had won me over with just the trailer to his first film. I was sold!

And to my delight, I got even more than just a kick ass Van Damme movie, I got a really good, well-thought out action/thriller from the first time director.

The story follow’s Philip (Jean-Claude Van Damme) in the moments after a shootout leaves him wounded and with a concussion. He, along with several other gunshot victims, have been rushed to a local hospital E.R. for treatment where he meets nurse Suzanne (Autumn Reeser) who treats Philip’s injuries. Soon, a gang of men storm the hospital looking to kill Philip. Now, Philip and Suzanne must fight for their lives against an army of well-trained killers.

What I liked about Kill’em All was that it wasn’t a straight forward action movie, as most of them tend to be, moving from A to B to C. It was more of an action/thriller with mystery and intrigue wrapped around a story that unfolds complexly before us. Most of the story is told from Suzanne’s perspective as she is being interviewed, after the events in the hospital, by two F.B.I. agents – Peter Stormare and Maria Conchita Alonzo, both who suspect Suzanne may be somehow connected to Philip since she survived. Is Suzanne telling the truth? Or was she just a helpless victim caught up in this mess by happenstance? You won’t know till the very end.

The scenes with Peter Stormare and Maria Conchita Alonzo as the F.B.I. agents interviewing Suzanne are really well done. Tight. Tense. Funny. Both are giving fine performances and really makes us, the viewers, second guess if Suzanne’s story is true or not.

I thought this part of the film was handled well by Director Malota. He really leaves you guessing until the final moments of the film. Just when I thought they were going one way with the truth, they turned it around on me. And then, when I thought it was going that way, they turned it on me again. When the final scene came, and the truth was exposed, I actually chuckled because I did not see it coming. Well done!

The plot jumps around a lot, but not to the point where it’s hard to follow, allowing for the story to unfold from not only Suzanne’s point of view, but also the F.B.Is. By giving these different point of view narrative, it allowed time to develop the characters and explain a bit of their backstory and actions in the movie, without bogging the run time down. I did like that each bad guy was given some history (at least how deadly they were) so when they went up against JCVD, (who is injured throughout the film) we know he’s in for a real fight.

And boy does JCVD do a lot of fighting in this movie! And it was fun to see JCVD doing what JCVD does best…kicking bad guy butt. I could not wait until he and Daniel Bernhardt (who actually took over for JCVD in the Bloodsport sequels) had their big fight at the end, and I was not disappointed with the result. It was fun seeing these two exceptional martial artist go at it in a movie and giving it their all. Both of them still have what it takes to put a good fight scene on film and are in tip-top shape.

That brings me to the action set pieces in Kill’em All. Malota knows how to shoot an action scene well. He knows that he has real martial artist on set and he can pull the camera out far enough to show what they are capable of; he allows them to show off their skills without cutting every second. The film was not overly edited, like a lot of modern action films tend to do (to hide stunt doubles) and it was easy to follow the action and where the characters were in the frame.

Everyone was fantastic in their rolls. Jean-Claude Van Damme was great at the mysterious Philip – you never knew if you could fully trust him or not, which Van Damme nailed with his quiet and very restrained performance. Daniel Bernhardt was perfectly cast opposite JCVD for the films top baddie and with his martial arts skills going up against Van Damme’s it was a treat to watch. Autumn Reeser as Suzanne really stood out to me, she was a funny, smart-assed, intelligent, take no prisoners woman and there were several times in the film where I laughed out loud at some of her retorts to Peter Stormare’s Agent Holman – I really hope to see more from her in the future.

I do wish we would’ve seen more of Kris Van Damme (JCVD’s son). He, like his father, is very skilled in martial arts, and when he throws a kick it’s very impressive on screen, just like his daddies, and is very good in the action scenes that he’s in. I’ve been seeing Kris in JCVD’s movies for a while now and keep wondering when he’s going to get his own movie. He’s handsome, has a lot of charm and charisma, and could easily hold his own in an action movie. Hopefully we’ll get one starring him soon.

If there is one problem with the film, it is the budget. You can tell they were working on a smaller budget for the film, and some of that does show from time to time. But it doesn’t really matter since the complex story is so engaging you can’t help but want to see what’s going to happen next, and how it is all going to unfold.

I want to end with this: if this is Peter Malota’s first film as director, I cannot wait to see what he does next – he truly has an eye for directing action/thrillers and I hope this opens up a huge door for him to helm other action movies. He had his hands full with this movie, balancing a complex plot, decent character development, and action scenes; he pulled it off effortlessly in the final product.

As for the Blu-Ray releasing of the film, I was a little disappointed that it did not have any extra content like a behind the scenes featurette or commentary – that would have been nice and added a lot to the releasing. That is my biggest complaint about the Blu-Ray releasing, but it has nothing to do with the film itself.

Kill’em All is a great action/thriller that any JCVD fan should add to their collection.

Pick up your copy of Kill’em All here at www.thecrimsonscreencollectibles.com
9 out of 10 stars.