You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Friday the 13th’ tag.

“Scream 4”
a review by Darby O’Gill

The movie that changed the face of horror is back, and this time with a whole new set of rules. It’s hard to believe that it’s been 15 years since the first Scream movie came out, and just a little over 10 years now since Scream 3. One would even wonder if we needed a fourth installment to the Scream franchise, especially when three already seemed like one too many. But luckily for us, screenwriter Kevin Williamson has also returned this time around, and has brought a bit of that old fun creativity back with him. The one thing that made the original Scream so amazing was its outstanding writing. Sure, it wasn’t Shakespeare. But, there’s no denying that it was the writing that made that movie the classic it is today. And with Facebook, Twitter, and a whole new style of horror movies emerging in the last 10 years, Williamson had an opportunity play with some new ideas.

In Scream 4, Sidney Prescott, played by Neve Campbell, has finally written a book that tells her side of the story, and is somehow talked into finishing her national book tour in Woodsboro, on the anniversary of the first killing. With the return of Sidney, the anniversary, and yet another installment of the popular Stab movie series, wouldn’t you know someone else wants to try their hand at being the Ghostface Killer. Dewey, played by David Arquette, and Gale Weathers, played by Courteney Cox, are now married and currently living in Woodsboro, where Dewey is the town Sheriff. They also introduced a new generation of teens, along with the idea that the killer might not be playing by the rules of a sequel this time around, and might actually be looking for a 21st Century reboot!

I’ve got to say, I enjoyed Scream 4 more than the last two sequels, but I still think they could have taken it a little bit further. Although, having Kevin Williamson back in the screenwriter’s chair is a big help, they did have a few opportunities in this script to take the franchise in a whole new direction, but in the end, they ultimately ended up sticking to the same old format. Well, that’s not completely fair. There is a new twist to Scream 4, and not one that I think most people will see coming, but I think the biggest problem the Scream series has always had to deal with is the fact that the killer, or killers, have always clearly died at the end of each movie. The other big problem is that the movie isn’t about the Ghostface Killer, it’s about Sidney, Dewey, and Gale! With Freddy, Michael, and Jason, the movies are always about them, the rest of the cast is replaceable. It’s easy to bring back the unstoppable killing machine once they’ve been established, and at one point in Scream 4 (without giving anything away) they could have easily done that. I’m not saying that it would have been a good thing for the series, but it would have at least been different, and maybe even a new direction you didn’t see coming this time around. Scream 4 manages to keep the audience guessing, and has more red herrings than you can shake a stick at, but it is definitely a welcomed addition to the series.

Rating:



Advertisements

“A Nightmare on Elm Street”
a review by Darby O’Gill

Okay, let me take a deep breath before we go down this road. Oh yeah, it’s that bad. Here we go; another classic remake that doesn’t work. The only person that’s going to be happy with the new A Nightmare on Elm Street movie, is Robert Englund, because it’s finally going to prove just how important he is to the role of Freddy Krueger. That’s not saying that Jackie Earle Haley did a bad job with the role, he just unfortunately was in a crappy movie with bad cat-man make-up. Also on a side note, I think Christian Bale should have trademarked his gruff-raspy Batman voice, because if he had he’d be rolling in the dough by now. Seriously, does every bad-ass character in a movie these days need a Ricola?

In the new A Nightmare on Elm Street, teenagers start dying in their sleep, and they slowly start to realize the same man is appearing in all their dreams, and is trying to kill them one by one. Now, I don’t want to spoil the movie for you, but I will be talking about a few of the plot points in the next few sentences, so you’ve been warned. *SPOILERS START* Let’s start with Freddy’s back story. He’s no longer a child killer, but rather a possibly unjustly accused pedophile. Sadly this is mostly true, but thanks to some last minute re-shoots, Krueger is now guilty of being a pedophile. Doesn’t that make you feel better? He’s guilty! Hooray! He touched their naughty bits, but never killed anyone. That’s right, Freddy Krueger never killed a kid until he started killing teenagers in their sleep. Really!? If he never killed any kids, then why would he want to start killing them now? Wouldn’t he be trying to have sex with them in their dreams instead? Do I really have to point this shit out? *SPOILER END* This movie really does suck! There are some nice moments, but they are few and far between. The writing is absolutely horrible. It’s full of I say this and you say that dialogue. And at no point do they even try to do anything interesting with the storyline. I think the filmmakers were trying to kill the audience, because I almost fell asleep two times while watching the movie, and I thought the whole idea was to stay awake. Although, death would have at least put an end to Michael Bay’s molestation of my childhood once again. First Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, and now A Nightmare on Elm Street. Look, the reason the Friday the 13th and the Halloween movies work when they’re remade, is because the movies’ main characters are big masked killers that don’t talk, where as Freddy Krueger is a personality, and you can’t just replace that. Bottom line, skip this movie! Figured I’d just spell it out for you. Do yourself a favor and rent the originals. The later ones might be a little cheesy, but that’s also half the fun. There’s nothing fun about this new version, it’s just quiet simply a nightmare.

Rating:


“The Wolfman”
a review by Darby O’Gill

Well, it’s only February and I think we already have a front runner for next year’s Death Coach Award. The Wolfman is a remake of the 1941, Lon Chaey Jr. original classic The Wolf Man, only this version will never be able to stand the test of time. Universal Studios keeps trying to remake their classic monster films with all the new technology of modern filmmaking, but they never seem to be able to get it quite right. I think their biggest mistake is trying to mix this grand Jayne Austin type of setting, with a classic horror story. They think it highlights the romantic undertones of the monster movie’s original classic story, but all it really does is set-up the movie for failure. I understand that these films are based on classic literature, but they’re also the original horror films, and should be treated as such. Just once, I would love to see how one of these classic monster movies would look if they had used a Friday the 13th approach to the filmmaking. I wouldn’t want them to be hokey. I just would like to see a monster movie try and be scary for once. You don’t have to lose the romance or Victorian setting, just focus more on the monster. The original movies were scary for their time. And in this day and age, it does take more to scare us, but that doesn’t mean you can’t try to make one of these classic tales scary. The studios should save their money, by not casting Oscar Award winning actors, or not overly focusing on the film’s cinematography, and just try to make a scary movie that will do its predecessor proud for once. I want to see someone like Rob Zombie remake one of these films. Hollywood can’t seem to wait to remake the modern classic horror films like A Nightmare on Elm Street, Halloween, or the Friday the 13th franchisees, and those usually turnout to be really good remakes. But for some reason, when it comes to the true classics, it never seems to cross their minds to have someone like John Carpenter remake The Wolf Man. Why is that?

Okay, so I guess at this point you can tell I didn’t really enjoy The Wolfman. Actually, I hated it! This movie was so long winded, and pretentious, that it couldn’t even die right. I’m not kidding. There is a death scene in this movie that is so laughable, that if you do go to see this in the theatres, you’ll be truly surrounded by the audience’s laughter during the scene. The other thing that totally drove me crazy was waiting for the Wolfman to start playing basketball, or maybe even try to get a keg of beer. Look, I give the filmmakers credit for not making the Wolfman a giant wolf, and trying to keep the classic Lon Chaney Jr. man-wolf look, but the last time we, as film goers, saw this type of werewolf was when Michael J. Fox was in Teen Wolf. I realize that making this type of werewolf work in this day and age is hard, but that was their job on this film, making it work. And, if they couldn’t make it work, then they shouldn’t make the movie! At no point during this movie, should I be thinking about Michael J. Fox and his keg of beer, but I did. Quite a bit actually, and I’m sorry but that ruins the scariness of this movie right there. That’s not to say that they couldn’t have made it work. Rick Baker did an outstanding job on the make-up of the Wolfman, as always. But, they just didn’t utilize how scary they could make this movie. If the Wolfman had been jumping out of the shadows and mutilating people more, I might have found myself a little bit more immersed in this film. Instead, I just found myself waiting for a big choreographed prom dance at the end of the film. Do yourself a favor, and skip it. Rent Lon Chaney Jr.’s The Wolf Man. Or if you haven’t seen it, and that would be a huge crime, get An American Werewolf in London. Hell, I would even suggest watching one of my all-time favorites, Monster Squad before this one, because this version of the Wolfman definitely has no nards!

Rating: