Syndicated from the Web


Quick Takes: The Platform, Zombieland: Double Tap, Child’s Play

by on Mar.21, 2020, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from Wicked October | Go to Original Post


The Platform bristles with a vexing, timely message & social commentary on class, resources & the penal system. Exquisite direction & a fascinating dystopian/alternate reality plot thrills, but leaves you hungry for more exposition, resolution & character development.

Zombieland: Double Tap sadly proves again that lighting doesn’t strike twice. It’s great to see this cast again but unfortunately the paper-thin plot doesn’t add much to the original. There are some great moments & a few chuckles but there’s just no reason for this sequel, released 10 years after the original, to exist.

Child’s Play is a smart remake that lives in a mighty big shadow. This film was created for a new generation that depends on tech to live & the horror lies in grounded fears of runaway A.I. Some of  it is beyond the limits of plausibility and I didn’t buy Aubrey Plaza as a mom, but still a dumb, fun popcorn movie.

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Quick Takes: The Platform, Zombieland: Double Tap, Child’s Play

by on Mar.21, 2020, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from Wicked October | Go to Original Post


The Platform bristles with a vexing, timely message & social commentary on class, resources & the penal system. Exquisite direction & a fascinating dystopian/alternate reality plot thrills, but leaves you hungry for more exposition, resolution & character development.

Zombieland: Double Tap sadly proves again that lighting doesn’t strike twice. It’s great to see this cast again but unfortunately the paper-thin plot doesn’t add much to the original. There are some great moments & a few chuckles but there’s just no reason for this sequel, released 10 years after the original, to exist.

Child’s Play is a smart remake that lives in a mighty big shadow. This film was created for a new generation that depends on tech to live & the horror lies in grounded fears of runaway A.I. Some of  it is beyond the limits of plausibility and I didn’t buy Aubrey Plaza as a mom, but still a dumb, fun popcorn movie.

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Quick Takes: Invisible Man, Color Out of Space, The Lodge, Come to Daddy

by on Mar.03, 2020, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from Wicked October | Go to Original Post

The Invisible Man updates the classic mad scientist story with a domestic violence angle. Elizabeth Moss commands our empathy & anchors a slapdash & often surprising plot. It’s effective, thrilling horror with stellar effects but its final reveal is problematic. If you make a message film, be sure its a good message through to the end. Clearly they were trying to set up a sequel regardless of the cost.

Color Out of Space attempts the unimaginable task of adapting H.P. Lovecraft & succeeds with a new familial narrative. The dreadful tone & creeping mayhem explode into colorful cosmic horror that evokes absolute hopelessness. Nicholas Cage is presumably loony but the rest of cast grounds the madness. This is one stellar movie.

The Lodge is unrepented, psychological torment about the inner devil within that awakens to wreck havoc. This cerebral, gloomy & exceptionally tragic horror drama gives up the ghost midway through to agonize us with the weight of choices made by those with deep grief & anger. It’s a pleasant watch but it’s an essential film.

Come To Daddy puts a Beverly Hills poser with daddy issues in the middle of an oddly amusing feud. It’s nutty, tonally loopy, and carving forks will be forever tainted. Elijah Wood is made for straight-faced dark comedy but this is not quite the horror as the marketing implies. It’s still highly recommended.

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Quick Takes: The Boat, After Midnight, Freaks

by on Feb.25, 2020, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from Wicked October | Go to Original Post

With minimal dialogue & one character, The Boat is a clever nautical horror is a cat-&-mouse thriller that only keeps getting more mysterious. It’s a tense ride that won’t please those wanting answers but will be a bounty for those beguiled by the sea’s dark side.
⭐⭐⭐⭐

After Midnight is a dreary romance with fits of humor & peculiar music. Also, a creature pops up. It’s a tonal mishmash that rests on whether you find the two affable leads charming & buy into their wine-swirling, rural-living, karaoke-loving hangs. As horror it doesn’t satisfy.
⭐⭐

Freaks starts as a mysterious but off-putting captive child drama then frustratingly treks into spectacularly ambitious yet all too familiar sci-fi territory. There is excellent world building, a strong cast, and a forceful finish that soars in to save the day.
⭐⭐⭐

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Quick Takes: The Boat, After Midnight, Freaks

by on Feb.25, 2020, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from Wicked October | Go to Original Post

With minimal dialogue & one character, The Boat is a clever nautical horror is a cat-&-mouse thriller that only keeps getting more mysterious. It’s a tense ride that won’t please those wanting answers but will be a bounty for those beguiled by the sea’s dark side.
⭐⭐⭐⭐

After Midnight is a dreary romance with fits of humor & peculiar music. Also, a creature pops up. It’s a tonal mishmash that rests on whether you find the two affable leads charming & buy into their wine-swirling, rural-living, karaoke-loving hangs. As horror it doesn’t satisfy.
⭐⭐

Freaks starts as a mysterious but off-putting captive child drama then frustratingly treks into spectacularly ambitious yet all too familiar sci-fi territory. There is excellent world building, a strong cast, and a forceful finish that soars in to save the day.
⭐⭐⭐

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Illusions of the Passed at Winchester Mystery House

by on Feb.15, 2020, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from Wicked October | Go to Original Post


Valentine’s Day can be a horror so attending a seance at the Winchester Mystery House seems like a good fit. Master magician and apparitionist Aiden Sinclair performed what is called a “theatrical seance” which unlike the seemingly traditional seance where people sit around a table, hold hands and talk to the dead, an audience sitting in near darkness participates in demonstrations of “mentalism” such as clairvoyance, ESP, and in this case, tarot reading. Everyone in the room was asked to close their eyes, concentrate on a ghost standing beside Mr. Sinclair and accept messages from him. It’s these messages Mr. Sinclair harnesses for answers.

He did produce bewildering results in prescribing tarot cards picked at random to complete strangers. It was quite the spectacle and yet not quite what I was expecting (parlor tricks, fog machines, and projections). This felt like a much more real experience. Yes, it’s entertainment but I could not figure out the trickery involved, and it made me a believer.

Photo courtesy of Britta Peterson.

After the seance, a limited number of high-rolling guests where treated to a private investigation of the Winchester House. Various experiments were held in two rooms, including a laser matrix to detect ghostly activity in the Daisy Bedroom below, and a spirit box to listen to words hidden in the static (the Estes method) in the Seance room. Some guests participated in these experiments while listening to stories from Mr. Sinclair’s previous investigations.

Photo courtesy of Britta Peterson.

My friend Britta Peterson of Eerie Elegance pointed out the respectful and compassionate approach Mr. Sinclair has to paranormal investigations. In talking about the tourist destinations like the Winchester House many guests don’t seem to respect the spirits adding, “How would you like it if so many people came through your house demanding you do tricks?” Mr. Sinclair prefers to listen, hear what they might have to say, and perhaps even help those lost souls.

Photo courtesy of Britta Peterson.

Aiden Sinclair and his Illusions of the Passed series explores other haunted places including the Queen Mary and The Stanley Hotel. For more information and tickets to upcoming events, visit illusionsofthepassed.com and follow them on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter.

Photo courtesy of Britta Peterson.


Editor’s Note: Gracias to Britta Peterson for contributing photos and information to this post! And you can deduce, she was a high-roller. Please follow her on Instagram and Facebook for comprehensive recaps!

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Illusions of the Passed at Winchester Mystery House

by on Feb.15, 2020, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from Wicked October | Go to Original Post


Valentine’s Day can be a horror so attending a seance at the Winchester Mystery House seems like a good fit. Master magician and apparitionist Aiden Sinclair performed what is called a “theatrical seance” which unlike the seemingly traditional seance where people sit around a table, hold hands and talk to the dead, an audience sitting in near darkness participates in demonstrations of “mentalism” such as clairvoyance, ESP, and in this case, tarot reading. Everyone in the room was asked to close their eyes, concentrate on a ghost standing beside Mr. Sinclair and accept messages from him. It’s these messages Mr. Sinclair harnesses for answers.

He did produce bewildering results in prescribing tarot cards picked at random to complete strangers. It was quite the spectacle and yet not quite what I was expecting (parlor tricks, fog machines, and projections). This felt like a much more real experience. Yes, it’s entertainment but I could not figure out the trickery involved, and it made me a believer.

Photo courtesy of Britta Peterson.

After the seance, a limited number of high-rolling guests where treated to a private investigation of the Winchester House. Various experiments were held in two rooms, including a laser matrix to detect ghostly activity in the Daisy Bedroom below, and a spirit box to listen to words hidden in the static (the Estes method) in the Seance room. Some guests participated in these experiments while listening to stories from Mr. Sinclair’s previous investigations.

Photo courtesy of Britta Peterson.

My friend Britta Peterson of Eerie Elegance pointed out the respectful and compassionate approach Mr. Sinclair has to paranormal investigations. In talking about the tourist destinations like the Winchester House many guests don’t seem to respect the spirits adding, “How would you like it if so many people came through your house demanding you do tricks?” Mr. Sinclair prefers to listen, hear what they might have to say, and perhaps even help those lost souls.

Photo courtesy of Britta Peterson.

Aiden Sinclair and his Illusions of the Passed series explores other haunted places including the Queen Mary and The Stanley Hotel. For more information and tickets to upcoming events, visit illusionsofthepassed.com and follow them on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter.

Photo courtesy of Britta Peterson.


Editor’s Note: Gracias to Britta Peterson for contributing photos and information to this post! And you can deduce, she was a high-roller. Please follow her on Instagram and Facebook for comprehensive recaps!

Leave a Comment more...



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