Movie Ramblings: Tenebrae

Tenebraeposter-350x536Tenebrae is an Italian horror film written and directed by Dario Argento.  The version I watched was hilariously dubbed into English.  Argento is famous for putting more effort into filming and music than plot and acting and this is quite evident here.  The film is nicely made and enjoyable but the plot is thin in places and the twists obvious.  Much of the acting is terrible but I think it is actually masked by the obvious dubbing.  The action is well handled and the murders (with one notable exception) actually much less gory than I was expecting.  Continue reading


Movie Ramblings: Vampire Girl vs Frankenstein Girl


The new transfer student is a vampire, the science teacher is a Frankenstein wannabe, the school nurse is a nymphomaniac with a taste for murder.  Most of the film leads up to the showdown between Frankenstein’s creation and the transfer student suggested by the title. The only film you’re ever likely to see where a person takes off her legs and screws them into the top of her head to use them as a helicopter. Continue reading


Movie Ramblings: Shutter


The original 2004 Thai version, not the 2008 US remake. This film is about a photographer, Tun, with a shady past who gets involved in supernatural goings on when all of his photographs start coming out blurry. After having a car accident with his girlfriend, Jane, and fleeing the scene, he finds that all the pictures he takes have “spirits” in them.  Slowly his shady past comes to light and the reasons for his haunting become clear. Continue reading


Movie Ramblings: Flowers of War

Flowers Of War posterFlowers of War is set during the rape of Nanking and even if you know nothing about this period of history other than its name then you will still realise that this is not going to be an entirely comfortable film to watch.  However, by concentrating on the interactions of a disparate group hiding from the rampaging Japanese army, this film manages to convey some of the horror of the situation without making it overwhelming and manages to occasionally lighten the mood as the relationships between the characters develop.  Of course there is also a fair amount of tragedy and horror to this story as well. Continue reading


Movie Ramblings: Rites of Spring

rites-of-spring-bannerWarning: mild spoilers for The Cottage, From Dusk Till Dawn as well as Rites of Spring.

Rites of Spring tells two separate stories that come together in the final act.  One is a crime story and the other a horror slasher.  It is somewhat like From Dusk Till Dawn in this respect.  However the clever thing that Dusk Till Dawn does is that the viewers don’t know they are watching a horror movie until the characters know so we get to be just as surprised as George Clooney when vampires appear and start killing everyone.  But in Rites of Spring, the stories are interspersed so there is no element of surprise for the viewers when the stories collide. It is also very like The Cottage in that a group of kidnappers accidentally stumble across some murderous hillbillies.  What this film lacks with respect to The Cottage is the sense of ordinary people and every day life (if you happen to be in the gangster/kidnapping business) that you get from a reasonably low budget British movie. Continue reading


Movie Ramblings: Dead Man Down

DeadManDownPosterThe first 5 minutes indicates that this is going to be a default Gangster/Revenge thriller with massive amounts of associated bullshit posturing.  If the film were to continue in the same vein as it starts then it would become very tiresome very quickly.  Fortunately, as the story develops, the romantic subplot is surprisingly engaging which accentuates the darker aspects of the story.  However the darker aspects are not really that interesting or well done but it still manages to engage the viewer. Continue reading