Blumhouse’s ‘Fantasy Island’ is Actually Pretty Good, but Don’t Expect Gore

The mysterious Mr. Roarke (Michael Peña) runs a mystical island resort. Guests come with a fantasy, and the island grants their wish. We have Gwen (Maggie Q), who regrets turning down a marriage proposal from Allen (Robbie Jones), Melanie (Lucy Hale), who wants to humiliate Sloane (Portia Doubleday), because she bullied her in high school,Continue reading “Blumhouse’s ‘Fantasy Island’ is Actually Pretty Good, but Don’t Expect Gore”

‘Frailty’: I Sure Love This Movie! (review)

Fenton (Matthew McConaughey) is telling his life story to Agent Doyle (Powers Boothe) in order to convince him that he knows who a hunted serial killer—his brother Adam—is. Through flashbacks, Fenton reveals that when he and his brother were young children, their father (Bill Paxton, who also directed) began killing people, claiming that God showedContinue reading “‘Frailty’: I Sure Love This Movie! (review)”

‘From Within’ is Pretty Not Terrible (review)

Lindsay (Elizabeth Rice) is a Christian teen in Small Town, USA. Suddenly, apparently because of a curse, teenagers are killing themselves faster than fashion dictates change. It seems that evil apparitions that look like the victims are killing them. The town points its collective finger at Lindsay’s schoolmate Aiden (Thomas Dekker), the son of aContinue reading “‘From Within’ is Pretty Not Terrible (review)”

‘From a Whisper to a Scream’ is a Seedy Gorefest with a Little Social Upheaval–Love it! (review)

Mid-’80s Vincent Price movie, AKA The Offspring; it’s told in four segments with a wraparound story. Having just witnessed the execution of a serial killer, reporter Beth (Susan Tyrrell) pays the dead woman’s uncle Julian (Price) a visit. He sits her down and explains how his town of Oldfield, Tennessee poisoned his niece’s mind by demonstratingContinue reading “‘From a Whisper to a Scream’ is a Seedy Gorefest with a Little Social Upheaval–Love it! (review)”

1985’s ‘Fright Night’: Sassy, Fabulous Vampires (review)

Not to be confused with the 2011 remake. Charley (William Ragsdale) is a normal teenage boy who likes to do teenage boy stuff, like try to score with his girlfriend Amy (Amanda Bearse) while watching Fright Night, a TV show devoted to classic horror movies. His good times are disrupted by new neighbors Jerry (ChrisContinue reading “1985’s ‘Fright Night’: Sassy, Fabulous Vampires (review)”

Tim Burton’s ‘Frankenweenie’: Wholesome Undead Canine Shenanigans (review)

Not to be confused with the remake; this is one of Tim Burton’s early works. 10-year-old Victor (Barret Oliver, The Neverending Story) loses his dog Sparky when Sparky is hit by a car. Unbeknownst to his parents (Shelley Duvall and Daniel Stern), he brings Sparky back to life a la Frankenstein. Unfortunately Sparky gets looseContinue reading “Tim Burton’s ‘Frankenweenie’: Wholesome Undead Canine Shenanigans (review)”

‘The Fourth Kind’ is Eerie, but Nowhere Near Based on a True Story (review)

Dr. Abigail Tyler (Milla Jovovich) is a psychologist in Alaska whose patients all seem to have repressed memories of being abducted by aliens. (The title comes from Allen Hynek’s scale for UFO experiences, being, respectively, sightings, physical effects, and the actual presence of aliens, though Hynek did not posit a fourth kind himself–thank you, Wikipedia.Continue reading “‘The Fourth Kind’ is Eerie, but Nowhere Near Based on a True Story (review)”

‘The Fly’ (1986) is More Emotionally Involving than the Original, but Much More Revolting–So, Standard ’80s Cronenberg (review)

Seth (Jeff Goldblum) is a scientist working on teleportation. His girlfriend Veronica (Geena Davis) is chronicling his experiments for a book. After a lengthy process of figuring out how to transport live objects (without making them a bloody mess), Seth transports himself, inadvertently with a fly. He and the insect fuse together, causing Seth toContinue reading “‘The Fly’ (1986) is More Emotionally Involving than the Original, but Much More Revolting–So, Standard ’80s Cronenberg (review)”

1987’s ‘Flowers in the Attic’ is Disturbing but Delightfully Trashy (review)

When her husband dies suddenly, Corrine (Victoria Tennant) has to pack up her four children: six-year-olds Carrie (Lindsay Parker) and Cory (Ben Ryan Ganger) and teenagers Cathy (Kristy Swanson) and Christopher (Jeb Stuart Adams), and reunite with her wealthy estranged parents, whom she hasn’t seen in 17 years because she married her uncle, and pleadContinue reading “1987’s ‘Flowers in the Attic’ is Disturbing but Delightfully Trashy (review)”

‘Feardotcom’: A Lovely Series of Plot Holes (review)

Feardotcom(.com) is a website run by serial killer Alistair (Stephen Rea), who believes that “Reducing relationships to anonymous electronic impulses is a perversion.” His solution: kidnap young women and film himself torturing them until they beg to die, thus creating “intimacy with death.” Protagonist Mike (Stephen Dorff) is the detective who’s been hunting him forContinue reading “‘Feardotcom’: A Lovely Series of Plot Holes (review)”