And here goes another mish-mosh of movies. And they weren’t so bad this time.
DEATH AND CREMATION (2010)
Death and Cremation reminded me of Stephen King’s The Apt Pupil, only without all the Nazi stuff.
The old man this time is horror veteran Brad Dourif, a weird dude who offers cremation services from his home basement. Why pay for that when you could just do it yourself in your own basement? Anyway, the pupil is a weird goth kid played by Jeremy Sumpter, whose horror credits include Excision, The Culling, and Animal. And some hot dude named Scott Elrod plays the detective investigating the mysterious disappearances of teenagers who all happened to have bullied the goth kid.
So Brad Dourif makes it a habit of killing bullies and keeping them in canisters in his basement. Sumpter comes and gets a job with him and soon wants in on the action. Meanwhile, Daniel Baldwin appears briefly as a father who for no particular reason is forced to mention that his brother died of AIDS. I guess that’s supposed to explain why his daughter resentfully calls Dourif a fag.
Dourif’s kills are deliciously brutal and gory, and it’s sort of a “revenge” flick. It’s also a real gloomy downer and everything seems to suddenly come to a quick conclusion after a rather slow build that doesn’t as thoroughly flesh out the relationship between teacher and student as in The Apt Pupil.
HUMANS VS. ZOMBIES (2011)
Humans vs. Zombies is a gory good zombie party movie. So people online need to just chill with their “worst movie ever” one-line reviews. I was hooked from the opening beach scene; a blonde bimbo in a bikini is attacked by a zombie as she gets out of the water and her hunky boyfriend runs to her rescue.
The plot is simple. College kids try to survive a zombie apocalypse. There’s a hot frat jock (who gets shirtless). There’s a butch geek chick who reviews video games online (calling some of them “gay”) but is sure to be wooed by the frat jock she despises before the movie is over.
There’s a cute virgin and the pretty girl who has the power to make sure he doesn’t die as one. And there’s a Jack Black clone (seriously).
Then there’s some crazy Iraq War vet with a gun. Oh. And eventually there’s a priest who pulls the whole “We’re being judged” act.
But mostly importantly, there are gut-munching zombies and just enough humor to keep this a horror movie and not turn it into zombie farce. Fun, fun, fun, I say!
NOTHING LEFT TO FEAR (2013)
I went into Nothing Left to Fear expecting to fear nothing. I thought it was going to be more of a thriller than a horror, but I was wrong. My expectations were all over the place the more I watched it. And upon learning that it’s devilish plot is based on a real life town.
This family moves to a small religious town with the hopes of making a better life (fools). I thought Anne Heche as the mother was going to be the lead. She really wasn’t. The film was mostly about the daughter. Anyway, they meet the local pastor, played by awesome horror character actor Clancy Brown of Pet Sematary II and Hellbenders. The daughter also starts eye flirting with a gorgeous hunky farm boy.
Pretty soon the daughter comes to face-to-face with one of those wide-eyed and O-mouthed CGI demon faced ghosts used in every movie these days. She also spits out that smoky plasma most often seen in pretty much every episode of Supernatural.
Then the movie turns into a boring romance between the daughter and the hottie for a good long time, with some hints that the town is full of religious crazies—because locals are spying on their budding romance. And I thought, “Oh God, not a religious horror!”
And then something happens that totally won me over. This film turns into a mess of a possession/The Ring rip-off. A Samara-like chick crawls and spasms her way around town chasing the family! It’s as stupid fun as the Sadako 3D installment of Ringu (my favorite of the series, which I blogged about here). I’m such a sucker for that kind of crap. It just took a little long getting to it in Nothing Left to Fear. The movie should have been cut down from an hour and forty-five minutes to an hour and a half. Or the hot dude, who happens to be Gregory Peck’s grandson, should have been shirtless for the extra fifteen minutes. It would have looked something like this.