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Rating History

The Giant Behemoth
8 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

I'm pretty sure that "The Giant Behemoth" is held in relatively high regard in classic Sci-Fi circles, but it didn't do much for me. It moved even slower than most of the other atomic-testing-creates-a-giant-monster flicks.
The beast is not an impressive one, even for this stop-motion animation fan. The cast was comical except for Gene Evans who was solid in the lead.

V/H/S/2 (2013)
8 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

There just isn't a way to explain how horrible this is. And by horrible I mean gory. There is literally blood and guts everywhere. Word to the directors, the shock value of shooting people in the head, digging an eye out of it's socket, pulling someone's intestines out, etc. loses it's impact after you done it fifty times.

This anthology is not scary in the least. The wraparound story and the first three stories are grotesque beyond words. If you think splattered brains, severed body parts and puking up blood make for a fright, this is for you.

There's an abundance of shaky cam as would be expected when everything is captured first-person (or first-dog). This whole affair is like watching someone play "Call of Duty" or if you're older "Doom".

About the stories, then. First off, forget the wraparound, it's indecipherable and lame. The first full tale is called "Phase 1" and it's about a guy who gets a bionic eye and starts seeing dead people. It's not too gory but it's loaded with jump scares which again are not scary. Overall, it's not awful but it's forgettable.

Story number two is called "A Ride in the Park" and it features a camera mounted on a zombie. If you are kind enough to have read anything that I've tried to write in the past, I think zombies are boring. These zombies do the same thing as every other zombie does, they eat people. They do that here in typically gory fashion. And that's about it.

"Safe Haven" seems to be the entry that many consider the high point of "V/H/S 2". It's about a cult that just happens to have their Jonestown moment as a documentary film crew is interviewing their leader. This one's not about showing you intestines and assorted innards, it's about gushing blood and splattered meat. Frightening, huh?

Finally, a short called "Slumber Party Alien Abduction" plays out exactly like it's title suggests. This is the high point of the movie because it had a couple of subtle 'did-I-just-see-something' moments that the others did not. When the chaos happens, it's loud and frenzied but it's not a bloody mess. The shaky cam was kind of annoying because it couldn't offer a bigger picture of the otherworldly danger.

If you are sensitive to gore, do not watch this movie. If you are okay with it, then "V/H/S 2" is a little better than the average 2013-era Horror flick.

World War Z
World War Z (2013)
8 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

Zombies are just not that interesting. Even the speedy ones offered here are pretty boring. The only frightening thing about them is that they'll rip you limb from limb. Problem is, that can't happen in "World War Z" because it's rated PG-13. So there's zombies, whose best club-in-the-bag is their ability to be repulsive. They can't do it in this movie, though. So the question is, what is this movie trying to do?

It doesn't do a good enough job of presenting the apocalypse that is rapidly taking place. The only solid indicator of world wide chaos are brief shots of smoking cities and a quickly accumulating death counter. The main character escapes impossible odds and because it's Brad Pitt, you know he's not going to disappear.

There were some spectacular special effects. The swarming zombie hordes provided the best moments. There were also a couple of twists that I didn't really expect, however they were overshadowed by my expectation of a scary story.

Don't be fooled. This is strictly an action movie with essentially no scares.

Jeepers Creepers 2
8 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

The first "Jeepers Creepers" was surprisingly entertaining. It had an effective beast and it was as creepy as its name clearly indicated. Much of that creepiness is probably due to the fact that the director is a convicted child molester. I didn't find that out until after watching this, so I won't be taking in any of his movies in the future.

In short, this is more action movie than horror. Ray Wise entertains as an unlikely. practically super hero. The monster is really effective. The high school kids who are killed off are all useless other than to provide the dead meat the story requires.

Skinwalker Ranch
8 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

This is a found footage movie that explores the disappearance of a young boy from a ranch. A team of young investigators offer to assist the rancher. They work to setup cameras in the hopes of capturing anything that may give them clues in figuring out where the boy may have gone. The investigators work for an organization called Modern Defense Enterprises. We find that this organization has some shady ties to past events at the ranch, but believe me, it doesn't matter.

The silent shots from random cameras placed in strategic locations around the farm was a good idea. This quiet exploration of the ranch by the cameras offers the movie's most intriguing moments. There are some very odd things happening that the cameras often reveal, some of these offer the movie's only real scares. The director manages to even sustain a few of those moments which makes me think he's got a future with some better output ahead.

The story is a mess and the acting is horrible. Every time the characters are on the screen the movie goes south. It would have been better to watch the cameras' stealthy generated footage for 90 minutes. The ending is sudden and left me caring even less about the strange events experienced on the ranch.