TUBI TERRORS: a ghost girl, alien zombies, and Bigfoot

It’s another mish-mosh of subgenres as I attempt to chip away at my massive Tubi watchlist (expect several of these). Let’s get right into them.

CAROLTYN (2022)

This one takes possessed girl and Asian ghost girl themes and gives them a fresh take with Black protagonists. Actually, that’s the only fresh take here, because otherwise it’s a fairly typical story.

When kids around town begin dying inexplicably, a mother soon suspects her daughter is next.

After being haunted by a freaky ghost woman, the daughter ends up in what I think is a military hospital. The ghost woman is the highlight in this obviously low budget flick, and she comes across as a total rip-off of The Grudge and The Ring girls. In other words, she’s loads of fun.

Danny Trejo joins in on the silliness as a guy who experienced the entity when he was a kid, so there are flashbacks of how it terrorized his family, and Eric Roberts appears in a flashback about the entity’s background, which involved a mob of white people lynching a Black woman. That makes it kind of bullshit that the entity is terrorizing a young Black girl and her mother instead of some white bitches!

Would you believe Danny Trejo ends up wielding a machete…?

Just be aware that all hell doesn’t break loose until 54 minutes into the movie, and themes of God and faith come into play as the mother is forced to face her demons. Ugh. Not to mention, the final frame is just so cheesy.

NIGHT OF THE FALLING STARS (2021)

When you want to make a cabin in the woods alien movie but you don’t have the budget to create any kind of alien effects, you do something like this…the aliens spread their infection through humans, basically turning them (and this movie) into a zombie outbreak.

There’s literally nothing you haven’t seen before in Night of the Falling Stars, but the familiarity is what makes it watchable, beginning with the comic book style, graphical text intros of each character. I’m so over the use of this device in movies with the intent of being quirky and cool.

Anyway, a group of friends goes to a cabin in the woods, and before long they are being attacked and bitten by other humans, so they hole themselves up in their cabin.

Thanks to the geek in the group, they figure out there are aliens passing parasites to humans and converting them.

It’s not scary, and attempts at camp and excessive pop culture meta humor don’t fully hit the mark, but it has its fun moments. Especially when horror hunk Paul Logan shows up…shirtless in his undies. His deadpan delivery is the highlight of the whole movie, and I feel his character was underutilized.

Other than that, there’s a lot of standing around trying to figure out how they’re going to escape the situation, plus a low budget chase through the woods at the end. Also, Logan gets a disappointingly short action sequence fighting zombies…I mean…aliens.

STRANDED (2023)

I did not expect a Bigfoot movie from the director of the sleazy good creature feature Don’t Fuck in the Woods to turn out like this did, but he does deserve props for trying something different.

We get a fairly impressive and atmospheric intro at night with a full Monty look at the monster, and he’s awesome in an old school, 1970s horror movie Bigfoot way. The movie really needed to live up to the vibe created here, but it doesn’t.

After the first kill, we are drawn into family drama…for almost the rest of the movie. It begins at the funeral of a mother whose kids are at each other’s throats over who was and wasn’t there for her. She left a video message intended to bring them all together. So…

…they head to a family cabin in the woods. At a rest stop there’s a bulletin board covered in missing persons posters. So much ominous promise.

The siblings set off on the rest of their trip, and their car gets stuck in the middle of nowhere. And there they sit for about 40 minutes of this 80-minute movie, arguing endlessly about the same thing. They’re not even trapped in the car because of Bigfoot!

Finally they hear a noise, they exit the car, and there’s a short sequence of events with them finally meeting up with the Bigfoot, which briefly brings back the awesome tone from the beginning.

If you’re a Bigfoot fanatic you might want to watch this for the shots of the menacing beast, but for me, once you’ve seen Exists, no other Bigfoot movie will really do.

 

About Daniel

I am the author of the horror anthologies CLOSET MONSTERS: ZOMBIED OUT AND TALES OF GOTHROTICA and HORNY DEVILS, and the horror novels COMBUSTION and NO PLACE FOR LITTLE ONES. I am also the founder of BOYS, BEARS & SCARES, a facebook page for gay male horror fans! Check it out and like it at www.facebook.com/BoysBearsandScares.
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