Goodnight Mommy (Ich Seh Ich Seh), 2015

Goodnight Mommy.jpg

January 8, 2015
Dir. Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala
Prod. Ulrich Seidl
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Starring: Susanne Wuest, Elias Schwarz, Lukas Schwarz

****WARNING: Major spoilers for Goodnight Mommy, if you haven’t seen it yet and don’t want to know what happens, STOP READING!****

When I first saw the trailer for this movie I thought it looked creepy, but not terrifying. That was definitely part of the reason I was willing to watch it. While it wasn’t terrifying (at least I didn’t think so, thankfully), it definitely messed with my head and had some majorly scary bits.

Goodnight Mommy (original title: Ich Seh Ich Seh) is a psychological thriller from Austria. Starring Susanne Wuest, Elias Schwarz, and Lukas Schwarz, this film does a lot with very little. You will be cringing at certain points all while marvelling at how beautiful the overall film is.

After returning home from getting cosmetic surgery, Lukas and Elias’s mother is different. They’re not sure how or why, but they’re convinced she’s not really their mother. Now the boys must work together to figure out the truth and what the truth is is a twist you won’t see coming.

This was a great film. I’m not one for scary movies, but like I said before, this one didn’t look too bad. It looked creepy, but not like it would have me cowering in the corner of the room with all the lights on. I definitely jumped at a few points, cringed at several more. There were a few times I had to close my eyes and mute the film because it was either gross or super uncomfortable (I’ll explain why in a minute).

Overall though I really enjoyed it. The acting was great, I know some people said they called the ending, but I definitely wasn’t expecting it, and it was really just a beautiful film. Not everything, obviously, as there were cockroaches and gross things involved, but the house was beautiful, the entire setting was just amazing to look at.

This film doesn’t have a lot of dialogue and there are many scenes where it’s completely silent, but it’s not an awkward or uncomfortable silence like what you might get in some films, Goodnight Mommy is just… quiet. And it’s nice. It gives you a chance to take in the scene.

You know how with some films there’s so much going on that you can watch it 100 times and still notice new things by the 101 time you watch it? Goodnight Mommy has three main actors and the silence allows you to take in everything. It’s definitely a film you’d need to see more than once to fully understand it, but your eyes aren’t darting back and forth trying to see everything.

I think the worst (best) part of the film is that it relaxes you with how beautiful it all is and then swoops in to mess with your head.

I have to give seriously high praise to Elias and Lukas Schwarz who play the boys in the film. They had to do some seriously messed up stuff and they played their characters so perfectly. Elias at the end was just breaking my heart and the way they interacted with each other and their mother through the whole film was perfect.

Some of the things they had to do, well, let’s just say there’s no way I could ever have done that. These boys will have you questioning their sanity and your own until the credits roll. And if I’m being totally honest, you’ll still be questioning even after.

I’ve never been a huge fan of foreign films before simply because I don’t want to have to sit and read subtitles for the whole thing. The only thing I normally will sit and read subtitles for is anime and even then the episodes are only a half hour.

However, as soon as I saw the preview for Goodnight Mommy I knew I had to see this film and I’m so glad I did. It’s such a great movie and it’s definitely turned me on to seeing more foreign films, especially creepy ones.

Goodnight Mommy is the perfect film for all horror movie fans, but may not be great for those with weak stomachs. I seriously recommend seeing this movie, I can assure you that you won’t regret it.

Have you seen Goodnight Mommy? If so let me know what you thought!

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Frozen, 2013

frozenNovember 27, 2013
Dir. Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee
Prod. Peter Del Vecho
Genre: Computer-Animated Musical Fantasy
Based On: The Snow Queen, Hans Christian Andersen
Starring: Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Jonathan Groff, Josh Gad, Santino Fontana

Alright, so I’m going to bet that when you saw the title of this review you either went, “Yes! Frozen!” or, “Oh no, not Frozen…” Me? I’m the first one, I love Frozen. A little relative of mine also loves Frozen which is why I’m reviewing it today.

Even if you haven’t seen this movie I’m going to assume you’ve heard of it since it was pretty much the biggest thing since sliced bread for pretty much all of last year and a good portion of this year. the hype seems to have died down a bit, but with Halloween and Christmas coming up I’m betting Olaf will be rising from the dead.

There are so many things about this film that make it amazing. The animation is brilliant, the music is wonderful, and it’s absolutely hilarious. That’s not to say I liked everything about the film, there’s one thing in particular that sticks out in my mind that I wasn’t crazy about, but I’ll get to that in just a minute.

Let’s start with the music which is probably the thing everyone knows best from this Disney movie.

The Frozen soundtrack is everywhere. Seriously, there are conspiracies about the government trying to brainwash people with radio waves, even the government couldn’t do as good a job as Frozen did with “Let It Go”.

I was working at a summer camp the summer after Frozen was released and every child ages four and five knew the words to “Let It Go”. Some of them even knew the words to the other songs! The music is just so catchy.

I will admit that when I walked out of the theatre after seeing Frozen I was humming the music and I immediately went home and looked up the songs on Youtube because they’re just really good. I don’t know what it is. Disney movies always have great music, but for some reason this soundtrack is just in everyone’s heads.

I heard “Let It Go” on the radio the other day as I was driving to a friend’s house and I turned it up and I was just jamming along and it was great. Whether it’s the amazing lyrics or the breathtaking voice of Idina Menzel, I’m not sure, but it’s a great song.

But of course, it’s not the only song in the movie so let’s move on to the others shall we? There are eight other main songs (meaning not the instrumental songs) on the soundtrack.

“Frozen Heart”
“Do You Want to Build a Snowman?”
“For the First Time in Forever”
“Love is an Open Door”
“Reindeer(s) Are Better Than People”
“In Summer”
“For the First Time in Forever (Reprise)”
“Fixer Upper”

I love all these songs and I don’t think I could pick a favourite. They’re fun, they’re catchy, the singers are brilliant, and they’re just so memorable. Seriously, go listen to one of these songs and tell me it doesn’t get stuck in your head.

Now, I did actually have an issue with the music in this film and that issue is that the music pretty much takes place only in the first half of the film. Seven of the songs and “Let It Go” take place in the first half and then the only song that really happens during the second half of the film is “Fixer Upper”. I love the music, but I wish it had been a bit more spread out through the film.

Honestly though, this is only a tiny thing in a film that is absolutely brilliant. The animation is great. The characters have individual little stray hairs and the snowflakes looked so real. I will never stop being impressed with the technology and the artists who create these things.

Not only that, but the writers did an amazing job. This humour in this film is non-stop, especially with Olaf.

Olaf is my absolute favourite character in this film. I even created a life size cut out of him when I was at uni as a decoration for my dorm’s lounge.

 Decorating for Christmas 20

He’s funny and sarcastic and his lines were the best in the whole film.

The worst character was definitely Hans. I saw someone on Tumblr once describe him as being like a villain out of Game of Thrones and I’d say this is a pretty accurate description. He was going to slice Elsa with a sword! If Anna hadn’t got in the way and turned to ice when she did she’d be dead or Elsa would be dead and it would’ve been a whole different kind of movie.

They would’ve needed a higher rating for that.

Frozen is great. I know a lot of people are sick of it, but it is genuinely a great film. If you have little relatives watch it with them. The songs may annoy you and you may be sick of hearing about Frozen, but their excitement is so adorable.

Or, if you’re really sick Frozen, go look up some of the parodies on “Let It Go”. There are so many out there, I’ve heard a ton and they’re all hilarious.

The Hillywood Show did one based on Lord of the Rings and you can watch the video below.

There’s also this one which is called the ‘Honest Exams Version’ and I don’t recommend it for small children as it does contain lots of cursing, but hey, it’s about exams so what do you expect?

If you haven’t seen Frozen yet I seriously recommend watching it. It’s a brilliant film and it isn’t nearly as annoying as all the merchandise makes it seem.

If you have seen Frozen let me know what you thought!

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Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, 2013

Hansel and GretelJanuary 25, 2013
Dir. Tommy Wirkola
Prod. Will Ferrell, Adam McKay, Kevin Messick, Beau Flynn
Genre: Action Horror Neo-Noir
Starring: Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton, Famke Janssen, Peter Stormare, Thomas Mann, Derek Mears, Pihla Viitala, Robert Atkin Downes (Voice)

When I first heard of this movie it sounded really interesting. The preview kind of turned me off because of how gory it looked, but I figured since Hawkeye was in it, it would probably be a good film.

It is a very gory film, but surprisingly I wasn’t as grossed out as I thought I would be. I blame The Walking Dead for desensitizing me to blood and guts.

Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters takes the classic childhood fairytale and turns it on it’s head. Or rather, cuts off it’s head and burns it which is something you’ll see happen a lot in this movie.

The story starts off the same as it does in the original. After being abandoned in the forest by their father, Hansel (Renner) and Gretel (Arterton) find a house made of candy and the witch tricks them into coming inside before locking them up with the intent of eating them. However, that’s where the similarities stop.

Hansel and Gretel manage to escape their cage and kill the witch, thus taking on their official new roles as Witch Hunters. They spend their lives traveling all over killing witches and rescuing the children they kidnap.

This is how they end up in Augsburg. An incredibly powerful witch named Muriel (Janssen) is kidnapped children to use in a ritual that will help them become immune to fire, their one great weakness.

With the help of Ben (Mann) and Edward the Troll (Mears), Hansel and Gretel manage to stop the witches and discover something surprising about their own family along the way.

I really love this film. I’m a big fan of the grittier versions of fairytales and this is definitely one of those versions. The acting was brilliant, Renner and Arterton did an amazing job and Thomas Mann and Derek Mears play two characters you will absolutely love.

It’s gross and gritty, but also manages to be incredibly funny and I guarantee you will enjoy every minute.

Now, of course, we can’t have a Hansel and Gretel film with a Hansel and a Gretel. Jeremy Renner as Hansel was so perfect in this role. It’s so different from other stuff I’ve seen him in, but he still has the same sarcasm I’ve come to enjoy in his previous roles.

I hadn’t seen too much of Arterton’s work before this. I knew who she was, but I hadn’t watched too many of the things she had been in. However, anything she’s in now I look forward to as she was absolutely brilliant in this. There are some actors I find who are very expressive and she’s definitely one of them.

There were some scenes between her and Renner and even if she wasn’t saying anything out loud it was like she had just said an entire monologue with her expression.

She and Renner were absolutely amazing acting opposite each other. They conveyed the sibling dynamic perfectly. From the way they tease each other to the way they protect each other, Renner and Arterton did a phenomenal job.

Famke Janssen was great. I’ve seen her a couple things, but the main thing I really know her from is her role as Jean Grey in X-Men. While she was technically a bad guy in the third film in that series, it was nothing to her character in this one. I mean, Jean Grey didn’t eat children so there’s that. It was pretty great seeing her a role so vastly different from the others I’ve seen her in and I thoroughly enjoyed seeing this other side to an actress I really like.

I mentioned before that Thomas Mann and Derek Mears play two characters who you will love and I say this because they are funny and adorable and perfectly round out the main cast on the good guy’s side.

Thomas Mann plays Ben, a teenager who is a major (and I mean major) fan of Hansel and Gretel. From the first moment we really meet him with his book of Hansel and Gretel articles (he was the original fanboy), Ben is a character you can’t help liking.

Mears was a bit of a different case. Starting out working for the wrong side, Mears plays Edward, a troll who eventually rescues Gretel and befriends her. He’s big and grunts a lot and kind of reminds me of a really strong guard dog. While I was a bit iffy about him at first, by the end of the film I was rooting for him and so glad he made it out okay.

I can’t imagine what it must have been like to be the costume and makeup departments. Or the special effects people for that matter. The witches faces were disgusting and I didn’t recognize any of the actresses when their faces changed. The body suit Mears had to wear to play Edward almost had me believing in trolls. It looked so real!

Each scene was done so flawlessly it looks like they actually changed their faces from looking normal to being gross and terrifying. However, you know that obviously didn’t happen, and I have to give kudos to the people who sat for hours applying makeup and prosthetics. And to the actors for sitting still long enough to do that.

I made a paper mache mask in eighth grade and had to sit still with it for twenty minutes and barely managed that so I can’t imagine being on either side of the makeup for hours.

And can I just say, the amount of fake blood they used in this film must have been ridiculous. There was so many splatter and burning bodies and exploding bodies and just so many bodies. Bodies, blood, and fire. I’m assuming there was a medical team on standby.

One thing I really loved about this film was something they added in that I never would have thought of. Hansel has diabetes. After being forced to eat all that candy as a child in the witch’s house, he developed “Sugar Sickness” and needs to inject himself with medicine at certain times otherwise he gets sick. This is brilliant. I never would have thought of it, but it makes so much sense. He even created his own special watch that goes off when he needs an injection and I thought this whole thing was so smart and such a good idea on the writer’s part. Amazing.

Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters takes a beloved fairytale and adds gore, dark humour, and lots of cursing. And you know what? It’s absolutely brilliant. The actors are great, the special effects are disgusting (so something obviously went right there), and I watch it all the time.

If you have a weak stomach or don’t like cursing this film might not be for you, but if that sort of stuff just rolls off your back then I highly recommend watching Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters immediately. Seriously. Stop reading this and go watch the movie. You won’t regret it.

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Fantastic Four, 2015

Fantastic FourAugust 7, 2015
Dir. Josh Trank
Prod. Simon Kinberg, Matthew Vaughn, Hutch Parker, Robert Kulzar, Gregory Goodman
Genre: Superhero
Based On: Fantastic Four by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby
Starring: Miles Teller, Michael B. Jordan, Kate Mara, Jamie Bell, Toby Kebbell, Reg E. Cathey, Tim Blake Nelson

I thought remaking a film was meant to make the film better. Apparently that’s not the case with Fantastic Four. I saw this film yesterday and it was honestly a huge disappointment. My friend described it as ‘50% poorly reworked back-story and 50% bad CGI’. This is a pretty accurate description.

Now don’t get me wrong. It definitely wasn’t the worst movie I’ve ever seen, that spot is still held by Cloverfield, but this one is definitely up there.

I know a lot of people didn’t like the other film version of Fantastic Four (2005). Personally, I didn’t mind it or it’s sequel, The Silver Surfer (2007). They weren’t cinematic masterpieces, but I actually did enjoy them. I think that fact just made the new movie even worse.

It’s been ten years since the first FF so theoretically they should’ve improved greatly when creating the new one. In ten years they could’ve figured out what it was about the original that everyone hated so much. They have access to better technology so this movie should’ve looked great!

Instead, I spent two hours bored and unimpressed. I’ve seen some of the actors in other projects and they’re great, but none of them really seemed believable in their roles. I spent a good portion of the film trying to figure out how old each of the characters were supposed to be and what their relationships were to each other. They just all seemed really awkward, but I think this had more to do with the super corny and awkward dialogue.

Seriously, the line at the end, when Ben says “fantastic” and that’s how Reed comes up with the name ‘Fantastic Four’. Oh. My. God. I cringed so hard it was ridiculous. That’s so cheesy! Like, in the 2005 version, Johnny comes up with their superhero names and that’s super cheesy, but it’s funny. It’s supposed to be funny and kind of dumb because Johnny’s doing it deliberately. This was just bad.

Something else about this film I was disappointed with was the CGI. It wasn’t terrible, I’ve seen some really poorly done CGI babies, so to create an entire planet with computers they did alright. But it is 2015 and while my hopes weren’t high, I don’t think they could’ve done any worse.

I also spent quite a lot of time trying to figure out if Doom’s beam was a rip off of the beam in “Mass Effect” or if it was just a coincidence.

Overall, the new Fantastic Four isn’t the worst movie I’ve ever seen. It’s not even the worst remake I’ve seen. however, it’s not a movie I’ll voluntarily watch again. I’m hopeful that if they decide to do a sequel they’ll take everything they did wrong here and do the opposite.

They had the chance to make a great film and, unfortunately, it flopped. However, since it’s Fantastic Four I’m hopeful that they’ll redeem themselves. One day. Maybe in another ten years. After they sell back the rights to Marvel.

Have you seen Fantastic Four? What did you think?

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The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies, 2014

Battle of the Five ArmiesDecember 17, 2014
Dir. Peter Jackson
Prod. Carolynne Cunningham, Zane Weiner, Fran Walsh, Peter Jackson
Genre: Epic Fantasy Adventure
Starring: Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Benedict Cumberbatch, Orlando Bloom, Evangeline Lilly, Luke Evans, Lee Pace, Graham Mctavish, Ken Stott, Aidan Turner, Dean O’Gorman, Mark Hadlow, Jed Brophy, Adam Brown, John Callen, Peter Hambleton, William Kercher, James Nesbitt, Stephen Hunter, Cate Blanchett, Hugo Weaving, Christopher Lee, Sylvester McCoy, Manu Bennett, John Tui, Billy Connolly, Mikael Persbrandt, Stephen Fry, John Bell, Peggy Nesbitt, Mary Nesbitt

****Warning: This post contains MAJOR spoilers for The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies and The Hobbit book****

This is it. The final Hobbit film. Probably the last film to ever be based on any work by the brilliant J.R.R. Tolkien. The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies.

In this final installment of The Hobbit trilogy, loyalties are tested, families divided, and battle fought. We see death, love, and a war of epic proportions, pretty much everything that makes a good Tolkien/Jackson film.

And let me tell you, this was a good film. I actually think of all three films, Battle of the Five Armies might have been my favorite. It’s pretty close with the first one, some days it’s one and some days it’s three, but it’s definitely up there.

This is because of many reasons, the first of which is the special effects. It’s kind of funny because I know special effects (at least in regard to CGI) was something a lot of people hated about it this film, but personally it didn’t bother me.

I really can’t tell the difference between an army made up of thousands of CGI soldiers and an army of thousands of real soldiers. You know, since I’m typically more focused on the main characters and not the extras in the background. But I mean, if the CGI were really bad you would notice so I think it probably says a lot that I pay about as much attention to the armies in The Hobbit as I did in Lord of the Rings.

Besides, I think any displeasure over the use of CGI can pretty much be annihilated over the glorious being called Smaug.

I’ll admit I was kind of disappointed at how little Smaug there actually was in this film. I thought Desolation of Smaug ended in a great place, but it left so much hype for Smaug that the scene in BotFA just didn’t quite meet the mark.

However, the lack of Smaug in film three was not down to Peter Jackson and the rest of the crew, but rather the plot of the book which is something they followed very closely.

This is something I’ve always loved about Jackson’s adaptations. He sticks to, and honours, Tolkien’s story. If you look at other film adaptation like Harry Potter or Percy Jackson the story is there, the ideas are there, but there are so many changes that the emotions readers got from the book isn’t the same.

This is the total opposite of what The Hobbit does. Even when they have to cut scenes for time, Tolkien’s world and voice still shines through.

Of course, not everything is the same. Several characters were added into the films who either weren’t in the book at all or only had small roles. The most notable of these was probably Tauriel, who Jackson added because he said it didn’t feel right to have this huge film come out with now strong females characters in this day and age.

Now I did already talk about Tauriel in my review of Desolation of Smaug and I stand by what I said there, but I did a difference between films two and three that I quite liked. Tauriel is such a badass. Her character is spectacular and Evangeline Lilly did a phenomenal job bringing her to life. But in the second film, this badassery is overshadowed a bit by the love triangle she was thrust into with Kili and Legolas.

While the love triangle is still there, it didn’t feel stifling in the third film. It didn’t overpower or overshadow any of the characters and didn’t stop them from fighting or their lives when the time came. I loved what they did with Tauriel in the third film because she felt much more like the badass female character Jackson had been aiming for and less like an object of desire.

A character I wish we could have seen more of though was Fili. This was actually probably the thing that bugged me the most. They added in a love story, but Fili really didn’t get very much screen time.

Dean O’Gorman is a phenomenal actor (seriously, check out The Almighty Johnsons, it’s great) and we didn’t get to see that much in this film. But only that, but (*Spoiler Alert*) they totally changed his death scene which, in turn, changed Kili’s and Thorin’s.

In the book Kili and Fili die defending their uncle. In BotFA they die totally separately and, while both death scenes were incredibly sad (I cried), I feel like it would have been a lot more powerful if the brother had died together.

That being said, I thought Thorin’s death scene was pretty good. I thought at first it was really lame when Azog just slips off the ice and into the water. First time I saw it I was like, “Are you kidding? All that build up and… what? He just drowns?” But no, it was fine. They brought it back and Thorin’s death ended up being even more emotional than I’d thought it would be.

Overall I felt like Battle of the Five Armies was a great film, but I was a little disappointed (confused) by the ending. I feel like they really left things handing, especially if you haven’t read the book.

Like, now that Thorin, Fili, and Kili are gone, who will rule The Lonely Mountain? What happens to Bard and his children? What about Thranduil? I’ve read the book so I know all these answers, but it just really felt like their were a lot of loose ends when the credits rolled. It just didn’t feel finished.

Honestly though, I did love the film. For all the things I think could’ve been improved, Battle of the Five Armies really was a great movie and I will be watching it over and over and over again.

Have you seen Battle of the Five Armies? What did you think?

Which is your favourite out of the three?

Are you ready to say goodbye to Middle Earth?

 

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Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!, 2015

Sharknado 3 oh hell no

July 22, 2015
Dir. Anthony C. Ferrante
Prod. David Michael Latt
Genre: American Disaster Horror Sci-Fi
Starring: Ian Ziering, Tara Reid, Cassie Scerbo, Bo Derek, Mark McGrath, Frankie Muniz, Ryan Newman, Mark Cuban, Jack Griffo, David Hasselhoff

My first thought when I saw the commercial for Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! was “Oh hell yes!”. My next thought was, “these movies get worse and worse every year. I can’t wait to watch it!” I then immediately went and listened to the Sharknado song (video at the end of this review) which has now been stuck in my head ever since.

Sharknado 3 is everything I was hoping it would be and more. Unlike the first two, the third film in the series doesn’t take place in just one city, but instead goes all the way from Washington, DC to Florida. With many returning characters from the first and second films and a wide array of new faces, Oh Hell No! takes cheesy shark film to a whole new level.

Where do I begin with Sharknado 3? I don’t think it really need too much description as far as plot goes. Anyone who has seen the first two know the general idea and, if you don’t know what it’s about, just read the title. It’s about a Sharknado. What is a Sharknado?

Sharks! Tornado! Sharknado!

That was said in the trailer for the first film and I still remember the exact voice and way it was said and is the way I describe Sharknado to everyone I know.

Honestly, this film is gold. Really, the whole series is (and yes, I said series. They announced a fourth film shortly after the third one premiered). Sharks in space, stair-surfing, sharks on waterslides, Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! had everything.

Sharknado - Shark surfing

There were many notable actors and actresses in this film, including David Hasselhoff, Frankie Muniz, Mark Cuban, and even with appearances from Lou Ferrigno, Penn and Teller, Jedward, and even George R.R. Martin who died during a screening of “Shark Wedding”. Well played Sharknado 3, well played.

George R.R. Martin

Having the main character in a shark film be named Fin is super cheesy and I laugh every time. Then, just when I thought it couldn’t get worse (better), Fin’s father is named Gil. And who plays Gil? None other than The Hoff. Yes, David Hasselhoff was in Sharknado 3.

It’s always funny because I just try to imagine what it must be like to have any of the Sharknado films on your resume. Like, I’d say a good majority of people have at least heard of the film by now and I just try to picture people’s reactions to seeing that on an actor’s resume when you’re casting them for a film or show.

One aspect of this film that I think many people enjoyed was the introduction of Lucas who was played by Frankie Muniz. Seriously, I could not count the number of Malcolm in the Middle jokes made. This one was definitely the most popular:

Sharknado 3 - Malcolm The Middle

Mark Cuban also played a part in this film as the President of the United States. If you can have one of the guys from Shark Tank say, “This is for America baby” as he’s using machine guns to fire, you’ve done well. Though apparently not well enough to afford a good green screen, as was displayed when Fin, Martin, the President, and Vice-President kill a shark with a giant American flag in front of the Washington Monument. It was the worst green screen effect I have ever seen in a film and I loved it.

Sharknado 3 - Green Screen

We saw the return of Fin’s beloved chainsaw in this film. Seriously, if a sharknado ever actually happens I’m just going to grab a chainsaw because apparently that’s all you need to survive. He actually had a golden chainsaw in this film which was actually part of his award given to him at the ceremony in Washington. I’m fairly certain that most awards given are probably fake, but not this one. Fin got a working, golden chainsaw because why not.

Sharknado 3 - Lightsaber Chainsaw

He also had what looked like a lightsaber chainsaw while they were in space. Little nod at Star Wars? I think so. Even April had a chainsaw this time around! Well, a handsaw. Yup, that’s right. After losing her hand in Sharknado 2: The Second One, April apparently replaced the missing appendage with a chainsaw. Pretty cool, but it seems a little inconvenient (not to mention dangerous) when you think about the fact that she’s going to be holding a baby soon.

Also returning was Nova who we hadn’t seen since the first one. They took the return of Nova as a chance to coin the term “Post-Traumatic Shark Disorder” which was the best decision they could’ve made.

Sharknado - PTSharkD

At one part of the film, Fin and The Hoff are going up into space to set off a laser (a terrible CGI laser) to destroy the sharks. April ends up climbing aboard the rocket and going with them Now, they don’t usually let pregnant women fly on a plane during their third trimester, I’m about 99% certain that going to space probably wouldn’t be a good idea either, but I’m guessing no one’s ever really tested the theory.

Sharknado 3 - Sharks in Space

But then, I guess if sharks can survive in space the baby will be fine. Seriously, the sharks in these films are indestructible to everything except gunshots and chainsaws. How is that they can survive in space and in tornados, but a single shotgun wound can kill them? How? Can someone answer that for me?

Probably the absolute most ridiculous part of the film (and that’s saying something) was April giving birth inside the shark. Now I’m going to be totally honest, I wasn’t aware Fin and April had older children. I guess that little detail went right over my head during the first two films when I was focusing a lot more on the sharknados.

While they’re in space April is eaten by a shark that then begins to plunge back down to Earth because apparently gravity decided the sharks weren’t allowed to be in space anymore. April somehow survived and, in a dramatic twist, she’s the one who chainsawed her way out of the shark this time. Along with the baby!

Sharknado 3 - Baby

How ridiculous does this thing look? Like, I thought the CGI on the sharks was bad, this baby is so obnoxiously fake looking, they weren’t even trying. But, just like everything, this only made the film a thousand times better.

One thing I was disappointed about was that we didn’t get to see Jedward being eaten by sharks. Jerry Springer was attacked by the shark from Jaws, but Jedward lived. *sigh*

Sharknado 3 - Jerry

The film ends with a giant piece of space metal falling on April and it is up to viewers to vote for whether or not she lives or dies in the fourth one. I mean, realistically she’d be dead. I’m surprised she’s made it to number three already. But this is Sharknado and if April can give birth while inside a shark in space, there’s no way a piece of space metal will kill her. That’ll actually be the most unrealistic thing in the whole series.

The acting is bad, the CGI is terrible, the music is fantastic, and I am incredibly excited for the fourth one. Sharknado 3 was just as gloriously bad and fantastic as the previous two. I’m so glad these movies exist in the capacity that they do and I really want to thank Anthony C. Ferrante for bringing these masterpieces to the screen.

If you haven’t seen Sharknado 3 yet, or any of the Sharknado films for that matter, go watch them now. They are so worth it and you will be laughing for days.

Did you watch Sharknado 3? What did you think?

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Insidious, 2010

Insidious

September 14, 2010
Dir. James Wan
Prod. Jason Blum, Steven Schneider, Oren Peli
Genre: Supernatural Horror
Starring: Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne, Lin Shaye, Ty Simpkins, Barbara Hershey, Leigh Whannell, Angus Sampson, Andrew Astor

It feels like ages since I last wrote a film review! I decided that to get back in the swing of things I would start with one of my favourite horror films: Insidious!

Now, I’m not usually a big fan of horror. I’ve seen my fair share and I’ve definitely gotten into it more in the past few years, but it really depends on the type of horror.

Gore? Can’t do it. All the Saw films are out and even Final Destination 5 was too much. Stuff with real people? Forget it. And I don’t mean real actors, I mean just normal people who wear masks and break in to people’s houses to torture them. Scream, Cabin in the Woods, The Purge terrify me. Some of them I can take, like Prom only because it’s more stupid than scary.

Weird supernatural things that don’t really make sense? Those I can do. They freak me out, but it’s the kind of freaky and scared feeling that is enjoyable in a horror film. That’s how I feel about Insidious.

When Renai (Byrne) and Josh (Wilson) Lambert move into a new house with their three children: Dalton (Simpkins), Foster (Astor), and baby Cali, they think things are going to be perfect. However, it isn’t long before strange things begin happening.

After Dalton mysteriously falls into a coma, seemingly for no reason, Renai begins noticing things around the house. Strange sounds coming from the baby monitor, the piano playing by itself, even weird figures suddenly appearing in the house.

The couple eventually decide to move to a new house, but the strange occurrences do not stop. Despite Josh’s disbelief at the whole situation, his mother, Lorrain (Hershey), decides to call an old friend, Elise Rainier (Shaye), who she believes can help.

Elise discovers Dalton has a gift; an ability that allows him to travel when he sleeps. According to Elise, this isn’t good and Dalton has travelled too far to a place called “The Further”. Here, other entities live, evil entities who are trying to use Dalton’s body as a way to travel to the human world. One demon in particular has attached itself and they must find a way to bring Dalton back before it is too late. The only way to get him nback? Send Josh into The Further and rescue Dalton, but Josh must do so without bringing anything else back with them.

I love this film. It’s creepy without being over the top terrifying. The acting is amazing, the music is great, and despite the supernatural elements, it’s one of the more realistic horror films I’ve seen. I’ll get to why in a minute.

The cast in this film all did an amazing job. When you make a supernatural horror, you run the risk that your cast won’t be convincing. They need to believably pretend that they’re really encountering these spirits and entities. Even if the spirit is a person in a costume, if they can’t pretend it’s real and make their performance convincing it can ruin the whole film. The Messengers anyone? However, I didn’t find that to be the case with Insidious. The children in particular did a fantastic job.

I always wonder what it must be like to be a kid in a horror film. It’s not like other child actors who go, do their thing on set, and then go home and forget it all. If you’re in a horror movie that stuff can follow you home. Ty Simpkins even said he cried while making the first film.

However, that fear did not deter any acting ability and both Ty and Andrew did a phenomenal job in their roles, both in this and the sequel.

Someone else who did an amazing job was the composer. Honestly, the scary scenes in this film probably wouldn’t be all that scary if it weren’t for the music. Creepy music sets the scene, it’s what really makes you jump when the demon appears.

I actually find the Insidious soundtrack/score to be one of the creepier ones I’ve heard. In most films or even video games I usually find there’s some sort of build up. The scary strings start quietly and build to the moment where the monster or villain jumps out.

Insidious is like: oh, it’s nice and peaceful and then BAM! Scary strings and demon are in the room!

And don’t even get me started on this song:

This song sounds like it could be nice, right? It’s bubbly and talking about tulips. But nope, nope, it’s just super creepy. I kind of wonder what it would be like if I hadn’t heard this song for the first time in this film. Would I like it? Would it be less creepy? Or would it not make a difference and it’s just a naturally creepy song.

Like, every time I hear “Supermassive Black Hole” by Muse, I think of vampires playing baseball. Every time I hear this song, I picture the creepy red-faced demon and the old lady.

Fun fact about the red-faced demon that I learned last week is that he is actually played by the composer of the score, Joseph Bishara. He works as a composer on many horror films sometimes actually appears in the films. Not only was he the red-faced demon, but he was also Bathsheba in The Conjuring and Demonic Figure in Annabelle.

I really enjoy the Insidious films because, as creepy as they are, they still manage to add a bit of humour. The humour comes in the forms of Specs (Whannell, who also wrote the film) and Tucker (Sampson). Their banter and fear over what they’re seeing adds a comic element to an otherwise scary film. It also adds a dose of reality because, let’s face it, most of us would react to a ghost by screaming and tripping over ourselves to get away.

But this is only one of the things that makes it more real. I said earlier that Insidious is actually one of the more realistic horror films I’ve seen. Sounds crazy, right? Given what the main premise of the film is.

It’s obviously not the supernatural elements that make it realistic, but rather the reactions the people have to those supernatural elements. Everyone in a horror films screams when something bad happens, but in other films they also walk towards the strange noises when they’re home alone and ask if anyone is there. They walk into rooms when they hear things and leave the lights off. In other horror movies, they stay living in the haunted house!

Insidious did it right. They creep quietly when they hear scary noises and are home alone. They turn on the lights! I was so ridiculously happy about this. If you’re in a horror film and you walk around your house in the dark, you get what’s coming to you.

Also, finally, they leave the house! It doesn’t make a difference in this movie, but they tried which is more than what other scary film inhabitants do.

Insidious is one of my favourite horror films. It has so many fantastic individual aspects that, when combined together, make a really great movie. Even if you’re not typically a fan of scary movies I’d recommend Insidious. It’s a great introduction to horror and is basically what got me started on watching most of the other scary movies I have.

Also, figured I’d add this in at the end. I just saw Insidious Chapter 3 and that one was terrifying. By far the scariest of the three.

Have you seen Insidious? What did you think?

Do you have a favourite horror movie?

Buy Insidious on Amazon

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