Tag Archives: creepy

Top 20 Horror Movies of the Decade Part 2

22 Dec

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December 22nd, 2009–

Here we go. These are my choices for the top ten best horror films of the decade. As I said before, once I really examined the decade I realized that it did give me some of my all time favorite thrillers. It just took some sifting. The ten movies below are, in my opinion, all excellent films that are working at the top of their game and genre. In this instance all have been out long enough that I’ve seen them a few times each (including Pontypool). They represent a quality of work and artistic exploration that isn’t typically associated with the genre. In the coming decade we can only hope to have horror pictures as absorbing and effective. Continue reading

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AMAD-Horror Edition: Nomads

15 Oct

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cinemagrade bSo, this is the movie responsible for Predator, Die Hard and Hunt for Red October? In a way, yes it is. Those three films are all pinnacles of the action genre; peerless giants, and all three were directed by John McTiernan. Predator, in fact, would be made one year later and it’s this little supernatural thriller that nabbed John the job to helm that film. So, if you give it nothing else, give it that: it jumpstarted McTiernan’s career and got him a gig directing one of the seminal sci-fi action pics of our time. The good news is that Nomads is also a highly creepy, engaging thriller, well worth seeking out if you haven’t seen it. Continue reading

AMAD-Horror Edition: The Changeling (1980)

13 Oct

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cinemagrade bGeorge C. Scott is not the most ideal mark if you are a troubled spectre looking to haunt someone. He isn’t going to scare very easily, and all of your dripping faucets, percussive banging, and Enya whispering are likely going to just tick him off; believe me, you don’t want George ticked off. But if you can get beyond the fact he’s probably going to get under your skin long before you get under his, he’s a great ally. Continue reading

AMAD-Horror Edition: Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark

9 Oct

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Oct 9th, 2009–

cinemagrade b-Television movies were a far different beast in the 1970s than they are now. In fact, you don’t see the major networks wasting their time with them much anymore. Regular weekly programming has become far more popular and with so much content, there doesn’t even seem to be room in the network landscape. But some 30 years ago, that was quite different. There were larger spaces to fill, not as many shows being created, and the medium of the television movie was relatively new. So, filmmakers and producers were creating low budget fare–many times they were either human interest dramas or thrillers–for the t.v. screen. Continue reading

Cinema Bites #2: The Tell-Tale Heart

7 Oct

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Oct 7th, 2009–

Today is the 200th anniversary of Edgar Allan Poe’s death  and what kind of Baltimorean would I be if I didn’t give the man credit? Well, I was hoping–prior to my illness here–to do something a bit more in-depth. I may yet. But for now, check out this short film that really does phenomenal job of bringing to life one of Poe’s finest short stories: The Tell Tale Heart.

All these years later, and this animation is still  haunting. The narration by the always great James Mason is perfect and can nearly drive you mad just by listening to it. This is easily one of my all time favorite short films and it’s based off of a classic story by one of the greatest authors to ever pick up the pen. Enjoy!

AMAD-Horror Edition: Sauna

6 Oct

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Oct 6th, 2009–

cinemagrade b A.J. Anila’s Sauna is an odd and challenging  film. The Finnish horror feature is the second for its director and like his first, Jade Warrior, it’s a melding of genres; supernatural horror, historical drama and existential mystery.  A grim, cold and foreboding movie, Sauna is really about the price of sin and the nature of guilt. I’ve watched it twice now over the past few days, and I’m still not quite sure what to make of it. Continue reading

Fantasia 09 Review: Whose Watching ‘The Children’?

27 Jul

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The Children (R) 84 min. Directed by: Tom Shankman. Written by: Paul Andrew Williams. Starring: Hannah Tointon, Eva Birthistle, Stephen Campbell Moore, Jeremy Sheffield, Rachel Shelly. Cinematography: Nanu Segal. Original Music by: Stephen Hilton.

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I’m a little conflicted about Tom Shankman’s  Brit thriller, The Children. Running only 84 minutes, the first 20 minutes are a little too sedate and clunky, and the last 20 too overtly shock-centered. Those 40-some odd minutes in the middle though, after the film has revved itself up, are nothing short of terrifying. It isn’t very often I’m unsettled by a movie, and even less often that one actually manages to scare me. But like it’s older cousin, Descent, this nasty bit of creepy kid horror intensifies to the point that even ominously structured glimpses of day-to-day life become anxiety-inducing. Forget Orphan, Joshua, The Good Son, or any of those recent milque-toast dramas about bad seed progeny chasing their unwitting parents. The Children reaches all the way back to the The Bad Seed and Ray Bradbury’s short story, The Small Assassin and draws on a deeply-buried fear of those small versions of ourselves we give our lives to trying to raise. Continue reading