Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Our Movie Awards - 2017

Me and my special team of expert have put together our own small awards for movies of 2017. Instead of making it into a huge thing, here are our winners and nominees. For sake of simplicity, we tried to keep the number of nominees to a minimum. Here is what we came up with.

Best Poster
Winner: Good Time

Saturday, March 10, 2018

200 Items Or Less: Young Frankenstein (1974)

A few thoughts: One of the most perfect parody movies ever made, this Mel Brooks spoof of the Universal Frankenstein films from the 1930s captures the mood and aesthetic of the originals, and plays off individual moments amazingly. There are a ton of little gems in here that only people very familiar with the Frankenstein movies would understand or enjoy, but there is a wide-open appeal to it that keeps it from being too niche. The physical comedy, quips, one-liners in this movie are almost all terrific, making me laugh as hard at them now as I did about 15 viewings and as many years ago. The cast is totally great, so singling out just one performance would be unfair to the rest of them. Regardless, there isn't a weak cog in the central cast, which is pretty impressive for a movie with close to 10 characters who get a decent amount of screentime. The music is memorable and thematically appropriate, the attention to detail with the production is almost unbelievable, and my only real complaint is that I feel the movie goes on for about 10-15 minutes too long. But it never stops being good, so whatever.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

My Favorite Movies of 2017

I planned on doing this much earlier, but I want to see the things I know I want to see before I make a list like this, and I feel I'm pretty well caught up now. Anyway, I don't plan on writing a ton for this post, so we'll get through them pretty quickly. First up are my unnumbered honorable mentions.


Saturday, March 3, 2018

200 Items Or Less: From Beyond The Grave (1974)

A few thoughts: The 7th and final Amicus horror anthology, ending a decade-long string of portmanteau films from the studio, and while it isn't particularly amazing, there's still a lot of greatness in this movie. With Peter Cushing back in the "host" position, this movie does an effective job at working each story segment into the wraparound. There's a bizarre sense of cosmic justice to this movie that I enjoy, providing the characters with the opportunity to make it out alive by being generally decent people. With segments starring David Warner, Ian Bannen, and Donald Pleasence, the cast of this movie is probably better than any of the other films, and none of these actors feel underused. As usual, I love the movie's aesthetic, and the general sense of unease and weirdness to these stories definitely adds to the creepiness factor. As a whole, this is probably the most linear of these anthologies, and while I wouldn't consider it one of my favorites, it's still a pretty nifty anthology and a fitting end to a loose series of awesome horror movies.

Monday, February 26, 2018

200 Items Or Less: Tales From The Crypt (1972)

A few thoughts: As much as I love Dr. Terror's House Of Horrors, I think this one has to be my favorite of Amicus' horror anthologies. With a very simple but effective wraparound story (complete with a cloaked "crypt keeper", not to be mistaken with the TV show's host), this one wastes no time getting straight into twisted stories that manage to get under your skin and elicit strong emotional reactions. Definitely the most effective of the bunch has to be the one with (are you ready to be surprised?) Peter Cushing, whose performance as a sad old man is totally heartbreaking. The opening Christmas-themed segment is wonderfully twisted as well, and their take on the Monkey's Paw is probably my favorite ever put on film. As a whole, this movie is violent and unsettling on an existential level, the stories are more emotionally charged than their previous anthology films, and even the fifth segment (which is easily my least favorite in the film) has enough going for it to keep me entertained throughout. A top-tier anthology film.