Cinepub


Zombie Month: Wicked Little Things by Jamie

Spoilers ahead.

Children are terrifying. This is a simple fact. They are here for one purpose and that is to replace us. Hell, maybe if people stopped having children, we’d all suddenly become immortal. But I guess we’ll never know because there are selfish bastards out there who just have to have their sweet little angels running around and making noise in cinemas. Seriously, don’t take your kids to the cinema if they’re not age appropriate for the film. All you’re doing is pissing everyone else off. Get a damn babysitter.

Our ancestors recognised the threat that children presented and did everything in their power to stop them by making them do horrible, horrible jobs that would kill or mutilate them. Things like chimney sweeping or fixing incredibly dangerous factory machinery or, as is the case with this film, make them work in mines. Unfortunately some bleeding hearts passed child labour laws and so children were free to pursue their tireless quest for world domination.

So yes, this film opens with a scene of a bunch of darling little children being forced to do incredibly dangerous work in a mine. One child is forced to set some TNT and before you know it, the whole mine has collapsed, trapping the innocent little moppets and killing them right dead… or are they?

The film cuts to present day and Karen Tunney has just inherited her dead fathers family home up in the mountains and so she moves there with her two daughters Sarah and Emma with views to fix it up and sell it. It isn’t long before weird shit starts to go down. Weird shit like having their door coated in blood by their neighbour, Mr Hanks and Emma being drawn to the site of the old mine by mysterious voices. She claims to have met a new friend there by the name of Mary. Meanwhile the children from the mine emerge and begin to kill people with their pick axes and shovels which is admittedly pretty cool.

Through the course of the film, it is revealed that the children are related to the Tunneys and Mr. Hanks and will not harm their blood relatives unless really riled up. This doesn’t help Karen who, of course, isn’t a blood relative though Mary, who is a Tunney herself, tells Emma that she won’t hurt Karen though she can’t make the same promise for the other children. The fact that they won‘t attack blood relatives is also the reason that Mr. Hanks goes around smearing his own blood on peoples doors. He also sacrifices pigs to them in an effort to sate their terrible undead hunger.

The children are ultimately after William Carlton, the last surviving heir of the Carlton family who once owned the mine that all the children died in. Modern day Carlton is currently doing everything in his power to buy up all the land and kick everyone off of his property which just conveniently enough means that he’s in the area at the time. So the film culminates with Carlton, Hanks and the Tunneys all holed up in a barn together. Hanks and the Tunneys stand by and let the children have Carlton and Emma informs them that the children say that they won’t harm anyone anymore. The Tunneys leave the mountain but they don’t sell the house. It is then revealed that the children are ‘living’ there. Really? They still have to wander the Earth as the living dead? That’s not a particularly happy ending. You’d think they’d finally get to rest or something now there business is finished. Is nothing from ‘Casper’ accurate?

That aside, the film was actually pretty enjoyable. It’s a fairly neat little play on the dead seeking their revenge on the living thing and kids are genuinely quite scary. Hell, that’s what Japanese horror and their American remakes have been relying on for a while. Seeing as the film was released in 2006, I’m sure the whole Japanese kid-based horror thing was some kind of influence on it.

Still, despite being enjoyable, there is a certain sense that it’s something you’ve seen before numerous times. It’s always weird when I come across a film that seems a little original and completely unoriginal at the same time but that’s the best way I can sum up this film. There are also a few moments where it gets really, really slow. Scenes of characters just wandering through the woods for what seems like an entirely too long period of time. I’m sure it’s supposed to add the feeling of people being lost but it gets kinda old, kinda fast, especially when they’re always in the same three or four locations. Anyway, I’ll give it three pints out of five. Laterz.

Advertisements


Zombie Month: Zombies Anonymous by Jamie

Just a short one today.

Zombies Annonymous takes the basic idea of the Zombie Apocalypse and includes the notion that the Zombies are still just as intelligent and rational as they were when they were alive and feel as though they deserve equal rights. Meanwhile a bunch of the living fight against them, claiming that the dead have no rights and that the world is meant for the living.

Some of these groups decide to take up arms against the living dead whilst the Zombies realise that they have a taste for the flesh and that the flesh actually makes them feel better like some kind of wonderful drug.

The film is painfully low budget with the Zombie effects looking fairly poor to start with although they do seem to improve as the film goes along. Perhaps the first think I noticed was that some people had teeth painted on their lips to try and make it look as though their lips had been torn off in some way.

Despite it’s low budget, the acting wasn’t really bad and the actors did a good job keeping me engaged in the story. If I had to highlight anyone, it would be a character called the Commandant who had a tendency to overact and it could be kind of off-putting at times.

Perhaps the biggest problem with the film is the quality. The shots and the film stock reminded me of ‘The Room’, especially early on. There were points were I had a problem making out what was being said. Still despite the flaws, the film was original and kept me quite entertained. Overall three pints out of five. Laterz.



Zombie Month: Zombies Anonymous by Jamie

Just a short one today.

Zombies Annonymous takes the basic idea of the Zombie Apocalypse and includes the notion that the Zombies are still just as intelligent and rational as they were when they were alive and feel as though they deserve equal rights. Meanwhile a bunch of the living fight against them, claiming that the dead have no rights and that the world is meant for the living.

Some of these groups decide to take up arms against the living dead whilst the Zombies realise that they have a taste for the flesh and that the flesh actually makes them feel better like some kind of wonderful drug.

The film is painfully low budget with the Zombie effects looking fairly poor to start with although they do seem to improve as the film goes along. Perhaps the first think I noticed was that some people had teeth painted on their lips to try and make it look as though their lips had been torn off in some way.

Despite it’s low budget, the acting wasn’t really bad and the actors did a good job keeping me engaged in the story. If I had to highlight anyone, it would be a character called the Commandant who had a tendency to overact and it could be kind of off-putting at times.

Perhaps the biggest problem with the film is the quality. The shots and the film stock reminded me of ‘The Room’, especially early on. There were points were I had a problem making out what was being said. Still despite the flaws, the film was original and kept me quite entertained. Overall three pints out of five. Laterz.



Do The Birthday Cage Rage! by Jamie

Well, today is Nicolas Cage’s 46th Birthday and I completely forgot. So to celebrate here is a video I made a while back of Ragin’ Nic Cage dancing with a bunch of round-headed aliens to ‘Bullet with Butterfly Wings’ by The Smashing Pumpkins aka the song I use as theme for my Cage Rage vids. Enjoy and Happy Birthday, Nic!


Oh, it was originally a YouTube only trailer for the Christmas episode, so you can ignore that coming later this week bit at the end. You can view Episode 1 of Cage Rage here, and Epsiode 2 here



Cage Rage: Episode 1 – The Wicker Man by Jamie

The first episode of Cage Rage, an ongoing series about the works of one Nicolas Cage. Today we look at the 2006 EPIC, The Wicker Man.

Vodpod videos no longer available.




Review: Ils (Them) by Jamie
10/01/2009, 9:59 am
Filed under: Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Lately I’ve been broadening my horizons, stepping outside the boundaries of my linguistic comfort zone and been watching some amazing foreign language films. From Spain’s REC to South Korea’s Save The Green Planet (which may have actually made it into my top 20 favourite films of all time), the world of people speaking words I can’t understand holds many sparkling cinematic gems.

Now as someone who has a certain fondness for horror films, it seems obvious that a good place to start with foreign language films would be those that fall into the horror genre. Sometimes this pays off, as with the aforementioned REC and sometimes it doesn’t, as with Japanese horror films in general. Don’t know why but I just can’t seem to get into them. Anyway today I’m feel like wearing onions round my neck, carrying a baguette and smoking incessantly so we’re off to France! Ha, Ha! Stereotypes are fun!

The French film in question is Ils, known in English speaking circles as Them, released in 2006. To be honest I don’t really want to spoil any of the scenes in this film by describing them in much detail because I feel like it would ruin it so I’ll just give you a general overview of the film. Clementine is a French teacher living in a large remote house in a rural area around Bucharest, Romania with her writer boyfriend, Lucas. One night they are subject to a home invasion by a number of mysterious, hoodie-wearing strangers and things just escalate from there.

Now, the film is described as being in the horror genre but I must admit, I wasn’t particularly scared by it. I’m not entirely sure why. Perhaps it was because reading the subtitles made it hard to concentrate on the scary action on screen but that didn’t seem to affect my terror levels during REC but after watching the film again, I think I realised what it was. Every moment that is set up to cause the viewer to jump is very, very obvious. Basically it seems as though each scare is telegraphed and so they just seemed ineffective to me. Maybe it’s because I’m jaded, seen too many attempts to make me jump in horror films in the past. On the other hand, I still jump whenever Ben Gardener’s head falls out of that boat in Jaws, so make of that what you will.

Now, because I didn’t find the film particularly scary, does that make it a bad film? Hell no. Once the action gets under way, the tension builds and builds to ridiculous degrees. As each unrelenting moment of panic passes, you find yourself empathising more and more with the two main characters and becoming more emotionally invested with their simple quest for survival. Yet despite all this escalating pressure this is still essentially a horror film without the horror and honestly I found it quite refreshing. It doesn’t go for the cheap torture gimmicks of most of the Saw films, no supernatural monsters and not one twisted serial killer. It’s pretty original and if you want to feel your heart rate increase to dangerous levels without shitting yourself with fear, I heartily recommend it.

Note: I watched the French film, Ils, with English subtitles. This trailer suggests that Them is dubbed into English. I don’t know if that’s true or if it was just for the trailer or what but in my opinion, original language with subtitles is always better.




%d bloggers like this: