Quantcast Horror Fanatics FIRST LOOK at Masters Of Horror Season 2



THE BLACK CAT


Original Air Date
: 19 January, 2007 (Season 2, Episode 11)

Directed by: Stuart Gordon

Cast: Jeffrey Combs, Patrick Gallagher, Christopher Heyerdahl, Eric Keenleyside, Ken Kramer

Plot: Edgar Allan Poe, out of ideas and short of cash, is tormented by a black cat that will either destroy his life or inspire him to write one of his most famous stories.

REVIEW: I've been waiting for this ever since it was announced. It's been that long, and now the wait is over. Last year Stuart Gordon brought us Dreams in the Witch House. It stood out to me as being one of the better Masters of Horror movies. Sure it ended on a bad note, but I enjoyed it anyway. When I first found about Gordon's next MOH movie, I was shocked. I couldn't believe the information that was passed onto my brain. Now that I finally got to check it out, I can sleep at night. Stuart Gordon's second entry in the Masters of Horror series is a definite pleaser. It's entertaining, gruesome and shocking. Stuart Gordon has done it once again. The season is almost over, but the Black Cat is already one of my new favorite Masters of Horror movies. Not only does it have a great story but the level of shocks and blood is right in your face.

In the movie we follow the great Edgar Allan Poe. His successful life as a poet goes grim when he is short on cash and ideas. With his wife sick in bed with a nasty virus, Poe tries to look for inspiration to write his next great piece. Poe is told that he could sell more by making a new story instead of the usual poetry, which just isn't selling anymore.

Sadly Poe's dreams are set back due to his horrible drinking habits, which leave him in a nightmarish state. As Poe begins to write again, he is tormented by his wife's black cat. This cat starts to eat the bird and goldfish, setting Poe on a small rage to hurt the ferocious feline. When Poe thinks he has killed the cat, he magically comes back and begins tormenting him some more.
I was disappointed over the fact that Jeffrey Combs had to cancel out on Dreams in the Witch House. But when I found out that he was going to be playing Edgar Allan Poe in Gordon's next Masters of Horror entry, I was more than excited. The idea of it just seemed too good to be true. Even so that the movie is a story about the inspiration behind Poe's famous story The Black Cat. I was pinching myself to see if I was dreaming. This isn't a dream, and I couldn't be any happier.

Although the story is based on real characters, I wouldn't go as far to say that all of this stuff actually happened. In the movie we follow Poe as he tries to write a new story. He needs the money, especially because his wife is sick and she needs medicine. Just as Poe tries to write he ends up being tormented by a black cat.

This cat takes Poe on quite an adventure as he struggles with alcohol, loss and suffering. This black cat seems to be the root behind his problems, making his already bad day even more painful. Gordon's The Black Cat is entertaining on so many levels. Jeffrey Combs brings us a memorable performance as Edgar Allen Poe. I would compare his acting to that of Johnny Deep in 'Pirates of the Caribbean'.

Poe is an interesting and lovable character. He can be a pretty funny guy at times too, especially when he starts hinting to the police that he's committed a crime. This movie also features a mind numbing twist that many will hate. I will admit I was pretty lost near the end, but the experience was worth the wait. I won’t ruin anything for you, this is something that you have to see for yourself. The Black Cat is a very entertaining piece that I highly suggest watching.

Overall: 8/10



WE ALL SCREAM FOR ICE CREAM

Original Air Date: 12 January, 2007 (Season 2, Episode 10)

Directed by: Tom Holland

Cast: Brent Sheppard, Laura Drummond, William Forsythe, Ingrid Tesch, Colin Cunningham

Plot: Telling of a group of young kids who tormented and accidentally killed a local Ice Cream delivery man whose spirit has risen to invoke his revenge on the gang, now all grown up, and their families.

REVIEW: I'll be honest, I got really excited when I found out that Tom Holland was going to direct a Masters of Horror episode. I love Tom Holland, he has brought us some great horror films over the years. In 1985 he brought us Fright Night, a very entertaining vampire movie which just so happens to be one of my personal favorites. In 1988 he directed Childs Play, we all know what that movie was about. Childs Play gave me nightmares as a kid, so it has a special place in my heart. Holland also brought us the Stephen King movie adaptations Thinner and The Langoliers. After Thinner we never really got to see anything else from Tom. I suppose he just disappeared for a while. Now he's back on the directors chair, and his latest effort is a pleaser. This is Holland's first entry in Masters of Horror, and he does not disappoint. His movie is called 'We All Scream For Ice Cream'.

The movie is based on the short story "I Scream, You Scream, We all Scream, for Ice Cream" by John Farris. To sum it all up, it's a story about revenge. Years ago, a little neighborhood gang of kids known as the West End Bunch, decided to pull a prank on Buster, the friendly local ice cream delivery man. The prank goes horribly wrong as Buster is left dead on the street.
Now grown up and a parent himself, former West-Ender Layne Banixter witnesses the friends of his youth systematically murdered by their own children, who have inexplicably turned against them. In order to save his family, Layne must face long-buried fears and the realization that sometimes the sins of the fathers are visited upon the son.
Now that the series is past its halfway mark, I can honestly say that I'm quite pleased. Sadly only two movies were able to blow me away so far. This one and Dario Argento's Pelts. We All Scream for Ice Cream is a very entertaining movie. Basically it's a fairy tale for adults. The story is simple and fascinating. A group of kids accidentally kill the ice cream man. Years later when the kids are grown ups and have kids of their own, the ice cream man comes back and takes his revenge.

He does so by giving each kid an ice cream bar. The ice cream bars are like voodoo dolls which seem to take shapes of human beings. Whenever the kids eat the ice cream, their dads melts. Yes, it's exactly the way I said it. It may seem like a silly idea but the way it's shown in the movie is very horrifying. A big tip of the hat goes once again to the KNB crew. They couldn't have done a better job in making people melt like ice cream, it's just fantastic. The story is short and simple, which is a good thing since these movies are only about an hour long anyway.

The direction in this movie is amazing. Just about every scene is enjoyable from start to finish. We're also treated to some wonderful performances by Brent Sheppard and William Forsythe. Forsythe is a wonderful actor. You may remember him as Sheriff Wydell in The Devils Rejects. Forsythe plays Buster the Clown in this movie. His presence alone is able to send chills down your spine. He brings a lot of heart and soul to the character.

Not to mention he's creepy with all that clown makeup on. I guess what I'm trying to say is that Buster the Clown is way too good for the Masters of Horror franchise. Buster is an awesome character that should have his own legacy of films in the horror genre. I think that about sums everything up. I loved this movie, I don't really have anything to complain about. The story is good, the gore is great and the characters are amazing. You'd be crazy not to enjoy it.

Overall: 8/10


RIGHT TO DIE

Original Air Date: 5 January, 2007 (Season 2, Episode 9)

Directed by: Rob Schmidt

Cast: Julia Anderson, Corbin Bernsen, Martin Donovan, Bryan Elliot

Plot: After a tragic car accident Abby is left in her hospital bed burnt from head to toe. The woman's husband Cliff alerts the doctors to pull the plug. Each time Abby's body dies, her apparition grows stronger, violently attacking those that have taken advantage of her plight. If Cliff pulls the plug, he's next on the list.

REVIEW: I'm a sucker for movies that dive into the real world. Movies that reveal the true nature of human beings. Especially when they have a political message behind them, I just love it. Much like when you see one of George Romero's zombie movies. There's always some sort of hidden message if you dig deep enough. The movie I just recently watched sort of dwells on this idea. One family's problems can be the media's next big story (I bet you can guess what I'll be using as an example). Rob Schmidt is the director that brought us Wrong Turn, the popular genre movie which was a throwback to old school slasher films. This is Rob's first effort in the Masters of Horror series. Surprisingly enough, his film actually stands out as being one of the more original ideas.

I'll state the obvious; RIGHT TO DIE story takes a supernatural stand on the right-to-life debate. It's very reminiscent of the 2005 Terry Schiavo case. In the beginning we follow a couple on a dark road. Abby is in the car along with her husband Cliff. Abby and Cliff have a brief discussion in the car and get into an accident. The car smashes into a fallen tree which sends the married couple out into the woods. Cliff survives from the air bag, but poor Abby was thrown out of the car.

Soon after that Cliff tries desperately to call the police on the cell phone. Things take a huge turn when the car sets on fire, leaving Abby burnt from head to toe. Her flesh has been charred and her body remains comatose, but from a strict medical perspective, Abby is still alive. Beset by guilt, her conflicted husband is determined to get a court order to end her pain. Cliff tries to get the doctors to pull the plug. Abby's condition gets worse as she repeatedly flat-lines and is revived.

Knowing that this is a "Masters of Horror" movie, there's gotta be a horrific twist right? Well here's the deal; Each time Abby is near death, her soul leaves the body. In this state Abby is allowed to get revenge on anybody that's done her wrong. Her main target of course is her husband, the man who had previously cheated on her. So Cliff is in a real dilemma here. Not only is his wife's ghost trying to kill him, but his mother in law is making the story public.

She fears for her daughters life, stating that she has the right to live and that it's not Cliffs decision to pull the plug. In fear for his own life, Cliff then changes his mind and decides to tell the doctors that he wants his wife to live. Think about it, if Abby dies, then Cliff is a goner. This sends out tainted character on a journey to keep his wife from dying. I wont spoil anything, but I'll just say that Cliff goes pretty damn far to keep his wife alive. The realism is there, we've seen stories like this before in the media. RIGHT TO DIE basically adds a horrific twist to a familiar real life story.

The movie features some intense moments. Most of which just make you jump, or gross you out. I'll be honest, some scenes actually got to me. The KNB guys do another great job of providing us the blood and gore. The only real letdown is that things start to become more unrealistic as the film progresses. The last few scenes in the movie just seemed too wacky. Other than that I had no real problem with it.

Overall the movie is good. RIGHT TO DIE is a great story about revenge, truth and decisions. Sure it has its strange moments, but in all it's a very entertaining film. The blood is there, the scares are there and it hits close to home.

Overall: 7/10



THE SCREWFLY SOLUTION

Original Air Date: 8 December, 2006 (Season 2, Episode 7)

Directed by: Joe Dante

Cast:
Jason Priestley, Kerry Norton, Linda Darlow, Brenna O'Brien

Plot: A group of rowdy teenagers break into an old mortuary looking for a good time find themselves stalked and killed off by the owner whom is a very real vampire.

REVIEW:

The new season has reached its mid point. From what I've seen so far, MASTERS OF HORROR Season 2 isn't all that bad. So far I'm liking the first season better, but we still have a long way to go. Only one film has blown me away so far, hopefully that will change soon. I recently got to check out Joe Dante's new movie. Last season he brought us HOMECOMING, which was the one about the zombies who came back from the war to vote for a new president. Apparently a lot of people hated it, claiming that it was just a typical blow to the Bush administration. I disagree, I loved the movie. I thought it was heart warming and important. I've already made my personal statements on politics clear in my HOMECOMING review, so I'm going to skip further notion on that movie.

I'm here today to talk about Joe Dante's new film called THE SCREWFLY SOLUTION. For those of you who don't know, the screw fly is a species of parasitic fly that is famous for the way in which its larvae eat the living tissue of warm-blooded animals (isn't internet research just incredible?). Based on the short story by Raccoona Sheldon, THE SCREWFLY SOLUTION is about a deadly virus that infects the nation.

Turning men into psychotic killers who attack every woman that crosses their paths. A man goes to visit his suburban housewife and teenage daughter, only to send them out on a treacherous journey to survive. The entire male gender has gone mad and there is very little hope to find a cure before the human race becomes extinct.

Don't you just love the sound of that plot? I loved the story. We've had our fair share of apocalyptic tales in the past, but never one quite like this. The movie plays out just as it reads. There's this virus going around that's infecting the male gender. Men start to go crazy and end up having very little respect for women. In such a way that men just kill the opposite sex for fun and pleasure. The male sex drive has been replaced with a lust to kill. The only victims you'll ever find are women.

As messed up as it sounds, it's the truth. I think this is the second bug related movie we've had in the series so far. I could be wrong but that's just from what I've seen. Only this one is more about a virus that's very similar to that of the screw fly.

The virus is being used to wipe out mankind. With all the women in the world gone, how could man reproduce? This issue causes nothing but trauma and fear amongst the opposite sex. For a twisted plot the movie was very entertaining. Rather than showing you the entire outbreak you follow a family who desperately try to survive, which is very reminiscent of H.G. Wells' WAR OF THE WORLDS.

The only thing I didn't like was the last half of the movie. Things just started to die down near the end, not to mention the ending itself was a little whacky. Of all the MASTERS OF HORROR movies this year, this is the one I recommend seeing the most. It's not the best movie this season but its story alone is worth the time.

Overall: 7/10



PELTS


Original Air Date: 01 December, 2006 (Season 2, Episode 2)

Directed by: Dario Argento

Cast: Meat Loaf, John Saxon, Link Baker, Melissa Gonzalez

Plot: An erotic tale about stolen raccoon pelts that violently turn against those that covet them

REVIEW:

I'm in the best mood right now. Seriously, I couldn't be any happier. This is the best night I've had in months. Is it just me or does Dario Argento love to push the envelope? It seems like he's not even trying to, he achieves so much by bringing us graphic material. Whether if its sex or blood, he has an act for showing us the goods. The man is sick, and I love it. He's brought us some really twisted movies over the years. Apparently his flow is still really strong. Last year he brought us JENIFER, which I believe was one of the best Masters of Horror movies. JENIFER was messed up and gory. His new MOH movie this season, makes JENIFER look like a Disney movie. PELTS is hands down the best Masters of Horror movie to date. I can't even begin to tell you how much I love it.

PELTS is an erotic tale about the perfect fur coat, and the cost of its craft. Jake Feldman is a fur trader who makes the deal of his life. Jake is following his pursuit to make the perfect fur coat, to win over the woman he lusts for. One night Jake receives a call from Jeb "Pa" Jameson. Jeb tells Jake that he has the perfect set of pelts for him. Pelts that are almost to die for.
Apparently both Jake and Jeb believe that you can't make a coat without breaking a few animals' necks. Once the deal was made Jake goes to visit Jeb the next morning, only to find him laying dead. Feldman steals the supernatural raccoon pelts and has his workers create the ideal fur coat fir him. Things turn violent when the stolen raccoon pelts turn against those that covet them.
This is a Giallo-style adaptation of F. Paul Wilson's short story. The movie opens up with a crime scene. From the very beginning you know that things won’t turn out good. With that said, I can't believe what Argento has done here. Giving this guy creative freedom was the right idea, because the contents in this movie are almost too good to be true. Coming from a horror fans perspective, PELTS is like one giant wet dream.
This is one of the most violent Masters of Horror movies out there. In fact the violence is the most notable thing about PELTS. The level of blood and gore in PELTS is amazing. This movie is brutal and disgusting. My jaw nearly hit the floor watching the first half.

As if the gore isn't enough, PELTS also includes the most nudity in the series (even some girl on girl action). The story is familiar and very well written. We're also treated to some good performances from Meat Loaf and John Saxon. PELTS has everything a genre follower could ever ask for. Great gore, nudity, great cast and a great musical score. Argento has done it once again. I was very impressed with this new installment. I swear to God I almost busted out with tears of joy. I loved PELTS, it's the best Masters of Horror movie so far. I enjoyed every single minute of it. It's brutal, intense, sick and twisted. Argento has created another horror masterpiece. This is a movie you have to see.


Overall: 9/10


PRO-LIFE

Original Air Date: 24 November, 2006 (Season 2, Episode 2)

Directed by: John Carpenter

Cast: Ron Perlman, Caitlin Wachs, Emmanuelle Vaugier, Mark Feuerstein, Biski Gugushe

Plot: A young girl trapped inside a clinic discovers the only thing more dangerous than her pursuers is the demonic secret that she carries within her.

REVIEW:

Usually after I watch these Masters of Horror movies, I would give them a second viewing to either take notes or pay more attention to catch things that I never noticed before. I think that this is the first time I've only watched a MOH movie once before reviewing it. Watching John Carpenter's PRO-LIFE once was enough for me. For some reason it just didn't appeal to me all that much. I think it's because I expected a lot more. Last year John Carpenter brought us CIGARETTE BURNS, which turned out to be my favorite movie for the first season. The script to CIGARETTE BURNS was well written, I loved story. It sucked me in from the very beginning. So after hearing that Carpenter was going to be back for another round, I figured I was in for a treat. Well, for this season Carpenter takes a whole different step.

His new film PRO-LIFE deals with a serious issue we have today. PRO-LIFE tells the story of a young girl who is trapped inside a clinic. After a close call on an isolated mountain road, young Angelique is sent to a nearby women's health clinic where she is treated by the doctors that nearly ran her over.

Angelique alerts the doctors that she's pregnant and wants to have an abortion. Claiming that she was raped and is carrying a demonic seed. While this is happening the clinic is getting a visit from Angelique's fervently anti-abortion father Dwayne, along with his well-armed three sons. The doctors soon discover that the only thing more dangerous than Angelique's father is the demonic secret that she carries within her.
That's basically it, the story is simple and intriguing. You follow a teenage girl who's pregnant with a demon baby. She wants to have an abortion, but her doctors are taking up way too much time. They can't really seem to understand why the birth process is going by so quickly. While all this is happening, the girl's father is outside of the clinic, waiting to make his strike. The father hears voices telling him to save the child. Thinking that the voice is God, the father resorts to madness as he and his sons starting blasting their way inside the clinic.
The subject matter in PRO-LIFE is of course abortion and the right to life, so it hits close to reality in a strange way. For a simple story like this I didn't expect to see any heavy gore, but Carpenter doesn't disappoint. This is one of the most violent (and weirdest) episodes this season. I love Ron Perlman, he's a great actor. Seeing him in PRO-LIFE was a blast.
To be honest I enjoyed this movie. Even though I didn't like it as much as CIGARETTE BURNS, I still found it to be entertaining. The violence is there, the story is there, so I can't really complain too much. Not to mention some parts are actually borrowed from Carpenter's remake of THE THING. PRO-LIFE just feels misplaced. I can't help but think that this would have been better off on the Sci-Fi channel.

I won’t give away too much but things start to get weird near the end. Especially when you actually get to see a demon pop up from the ground. The main problem I had with PRO-LIFE was the ending. Not that I didn't like it, it just raised way too many questions. Almost every character is left hanging at the end. Once you get to the end you don't really see where everyone else wonders off. Even Ron Perlman just completely disappears at the end. That really bothered, the final scene just left way too many holes.

Overall: 7/10


SOUNDS LIKE

Original Air Date: 17 November, 2006 (Season 2, Episode 4)

Directed by: Brad Anderson

Cast: Chris Bauer, Michael Daingerfield, Richard Kahan, Laura Margolis

Plot: Deeply affected by a personal tragedy, an office drone realizes his sense of hearing has taken on extraordinary capabilities that could drive him mad with insanity.

REVIEW:

Oh silence, how we love thee. I'm sure everybody has those moments where they just want to get away from everything. Peace and quiet, most of the time it's very relaxing. Thousands of Americans look forward to their next vacation just to relax. Where there's nothing going on, nothing to worry about. Silence is soothing, especially when you're just sick of all the daily noises. The movie that I am reviewing for you today exploits this idea of stillness and death. It appears that things took a sharp turn. Just when I thought the new season of Masters of Horror was going to get better, it gets worse. I need to stop getting my hopes up. So far it's been getting me nowhere. SOUNDS LIKE was written and directed by the man who brought us THE MACHINIST and SESSION 9. Brad Anderson is a newcomer to this series. Anderson's Masters of Horror movie is the personal journey of a man who is haunted by his heightened sense of hearing.

In the movie quality control supervisor Larry spends his days monitoring the conversations of his tech support staff's telephone calls. He spends most of his hours listening to others, sitting at his office next to his computer. Larry is great at listening, especially because he has a supernaturally heightened sense of hearing. He hears everything loud and clear. The gossip, the scratches, even the flies that stick to the wall. Larry is also haunted by a personal tragedy.
Larry has been dealing with his hearing problem even before the death of his seven year old son. After a while Larry decides that he can't take it anymore. He is forced to take violent action to silence the horrific cacophony in his head. Its "The Tell-Tale Heart" meets "The Conversation" in this tale of psychological terror based on Mike O'Driscoll's short story.

If you haven't figured already, the key element in this movie is sound. You hear it, and you hear it loudly. Basically you're right there with the main character. You hear what he hears and it's actually pretty clever. The movie features some great camera work. Some of the shots used in the movie are very impressive. You'll often see some close ups of the objects making noises. Brad Anderson's entry in Masters of Horror isn't much of a horror film however. I don't even consider it to be a horror movie. SOUNDS LIKE is a drama at heart.

It's psychologically compelling and moving. It features an ironic storyline that feels more like an episode of 'The Twilight Zone'. SOUNDS LIKE is misplaced, the only real horror in the movie is from the concept. Much like Mick Garris' CHOCOLATE, this movie seems more like a personal project. You won't find anything horrific until the end. You simply follow a man who starts to get frustrated with the fact that he hears just about everything.
Soon he's breaking things in the house and silencing everything that throws off a sound wave. This creates some tension and mild suspense. It's very weak when you compare it to all the other movies in this series. The movie was well written and directed. Both credits go to Brad Anderson, he really is a great filmmaker. I just can't help but be disappointed. If you're watching a show called "Masters of Horror" you would expect to see something horrific and gruesome. I didn't expect too much anyway, I never set my expectations high. Some of these Masters of Horror movies have very little content anyway.

SOUNDS LIKE is a real big disappointment if you're looking for the next good horror movie. SOUNDS LIKE really isn't a horror movie, it's a drama. So you can see why I'm really disappointed. The concept is interesting and simple. SOUNDS LIKE is perfect if you're looking to kill an hour of your day. The movie is decent, yet the story itself doesn't really progress. It just sits in one spot and doesn't change. SOUNDS LIKE is an interesting watch, but that's as far as it goes.

Overall: 5/10


THE V WORD

Original Air Date: 10 November, 2006 (Season 2, Episode 2)

Directed by: Ernest Dickerson

Cast: Lynda Boyd, Jodelle Ferland, Keith D. Humphrey, Michael Ironside, Lalaine, Branden Nadon, Arjay Smith

Plot: A group of rowdy teenagers break into an old mortuary looking for a good time find themselves stalked and killed off by the owner whom is a very real vampire.

REVIEW:

What the hell happened? The second season of Masters of Horror seemed to be going in the right direction, up until now. I'm not really sure what went wrong but man, I'm really disappointed. Mick Garris is a great writer, I enjoyed some of his previous work, but this movie was just far from great. Ernest Dickerson's THE V WORD is probably the biggest disappointment for this season so far. It's now my second least favorite Masters of Horror movie right next to Tobe Hoopers DANCE OF THE DEAD. For those of you who aren't familiar with Ernest Dickerson, he's the guy that directed DEMON KNIGHT and BONES (yes the one with Snoop Dogg).

To be brutally honest I didn't like BONES, but I loved DEMON KNIGHT. I thought it was a great movie. So when I found out that Ernest was one of the new coming directors for this season, I figured he would bring us something great. Apparently I was wrong, my hopes have been crushed. THE V WORD is just mediocre and disappointing on so many levels. I'll get to that in a minute, but first I have to tell you what the movie is actually about.

In THE V WORD we follow two teenage boys who break into a mortuary in hopes of seeing a dead body, only the macabre punishment visited upon them will far outweigh their crime. Instead of fulfilling their morbid curiosity, the boys are attacked by a rampaging vampire and must ultimately decide whether to sacrifice themselves or survive as blood-thirsty killers. So, now you know it's a vampire movie. This is the first Masters of Horror film to involve vampires. We've had a couple with zombies, now it's about time that the children of the night get their own one hour movie on Showtime. Surprisingly, this isn't your typical vampire movie. The movie starts off with a one minute opening scene that greatly displays the video game 'Doom 3'. Our main characters seem to have an act for playing violent video games. This theme doesn't run through the movie however, the fun simply dies down when the boys decide to break into a mortuary.

Yeah, apparently you can't have a horror movie without including a couple kids daring each other to do something stupid. The two kids have nothing fun to do, so yeah they dare themselves to go look at a real dead body. They break into the mortuary and things start to change. The mood of the film suddenly turns dark, and our main characters our scared. Judging from the music and the near pitch black look of the movie, you know something bad is about to go down. It just takes another ten minutes to actually get there.

The boys find a bunch of dead bodies, but a couple of them appear to be familiar. After seeing fresh blood on the ground, they realize that something isn't right. So guess what they encounter? A vampire! Only he doesn't seem like a vampire at first, he appears to be more like zombie, even so that he actually bites one of the main characters.

Tearing out a huge chunk of flesh which is fantastically displayed thanks to the experts at KNB. Right out the bat we know that THE V WORD's got the gore, but where the film lacks most is the actual story. I spent most of the time questioning the characters and the direction the story went. You hardly even get a back story, a vampire just seems to appear out of nowhere in this mortuary. You only get a quick history of who he is, but it's just not enough. The story to this movie seems very small when you compare it to the others in this series. This movie raises many questions, but you get very little answers. So what you end up having is a straight forward vampire movie about a couple of kids who have to deal with their change. Much like growing up, only these characters have to deal with the thirst.

One aspect that I really didn't enjoy too much was the "vampire vision". Actually that's just what I like to call it. You get a first person view on what these vampires see. It's just really irritating since everything is yellow and not really clear. Vampires appear to be handicapped compared to the normal human eye. What the vampires do have however is a pulse reader. It's like having a human scanner, you get to hear the heart beat of another person and you get the sense of how warm their blood is.

I give credit to whoever hired the cast for this, the actors in this movie were great. They even brought in Jodelle Ferland (the little girl from Silent Hill) to play a part. Being a vampire movie the film does feature some nods to Universal's black and white classic DRACULA. A couple of lines from the movie even appear in the script, which was nice but really unnecessary.

There's even a nod to NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD somewhere in the beginning. Mick Garris is aware that the horror fans love having that in the movies. It makes everything fun, but the only fun aspect of THE V WORD is its level of blood and gore. The gore in THE V WORD is limited, but what they do show is fantastic. There's a beheading scene in the movie that's very reminiscent of DEAD ALIVE.

I loved the gore, that alone made this movie decent for me. The rest of it is just forgettable. It had an interesting story, but the execution was bad. Part of the movie actually did remind me of BONES in a sense that a lot of it was just pointless. Overall though it is worth a watch, like I said it's pretty decent. The cast is great, the blood and gore is great, the execution was poor. If you're looking for something a little more straight forward then you might be able to enjoy this more than I did.

Overall: 6/10


FAMILY

Original Air Date: 3 November, 2006 (Season 2, Episode 2)

Directed by: John Landis

Cast: George Wendt, Meredith Monroe, Matt Keeslar, Hayley Guiel, Emily Tennant

Plot: The Fullers, a young married couple, move to a new town and discovers that their neighbor, Harold Thompson, is not what he seems. He putters away at his hobbies; however, his passion is anything but innocent. The Fullers will soon know what evil lurks in the depth of suburban basements

REVIEW:

I noticed that it's harder for me to write positive reviews. Especially when I'm reviewing a movie that I love. It's more challenging for me to write about something that I'm recommending to others. In my review for DEER WOMAN I mentioned that John Landis is more of a comedy director. He's directed some funny movies and it was no surprise to me that his first MASTERS OF HORROR movie had a lot of humor in it. DEER WOMAN was a ridiculous film with a ridiculous plot, which was one of its key elements. DEER WOMAN had a lot of humor in it, I laughed a lot while watching it. It wasn't the best movie in the series but it definitely was the funniest. This year it's different, John Landis' new movie FAMILY is a little more serious. Not to mention it has a great story. If you're looking to watch something that's both clever and entertaining, then you've come to the right place. This is my favorite episode for this new season so far. I give a ton of credit to Brent Hanley for writing this.

In FAMILY we are introduced to Harold Thompson. Harold is a lonely bachelor with incredible social skills. He seems like the perfect neighbor, but there's more to him than meets the eye. Harold has a twisted hobby, and a sick mind that's plagued with voices that aren't really there. During the day Harold does his best to create the perfect family. He kidnaps the ideal person, brings them home and melts their bones dry in the basement of his house. Putting the pieces back together for his display. Through this talent he was able to create the family that he always wanted.

Then things take a turn for the worst when the new neighbors move in. The Fullers are young married couple from California that move into a new home in the neighborhood. Harold meets the neighbors and befriends them, inviting them over for coffee and having dinner at their new place. Soon after George begins to develop a crush for Celia Fuller, and that's when he realizes that she would be make perfect house wife (can you guess what he has in mind?).

This movie is really entertaining. It sucks you in from the very beginning, and I liked it just for that reason. Any movie that can do that is worth the time. This movie starts off nice and fancy, which is the complete opposite of most films in the genre we see today. It doesn't really trick you since you know that you're watching a "Masters of Horror" movie. There's always a sick catch to these things. In the beginning we are introduced to a man who has a sick hobby. He kidnaps people, melts them into bones and pretends that they're apart of his ideal family. Basically, the guy is sick in the head. He hears things and carries conversations with the dead, or in this case himself.

George Wendt plays the lead role by the way. You may remember him as Norm in the TV show 'Cheers'. George is a great actor and he really seemed to fit this role just fine. George's character in the movie isn't really sane. He looks normal on the outside, but on the inside he's lost. He hears things, and some of the stuff that he picks up is just down right hilarious. The humor in Family comes from the dialog and creepy gospel music.

Things start to get more interesting once the new neighbors move in. Matt Keeslar and Meredith Monroe play a married couple that move into the neighborhood. You may remember Matt Keeslar as Steve Rimbauer from Stephen King's 'Red Rose'. Much like our main character, something just doesn't seem right about the new neighbors. Every character in this film seemed to be hiding something. Luckily for us, every question is answered at the end of the movie. This film has a clever twist that makes much more sense when you watch it again for a second time. You have to give it a second viewing to be able to pick up things that you never tripped off of before. With that said, Family also runs as a good mystery. I will admit though, the movie does have its awkward moments. Not to mention the violence is really mild when you compare it to all the other films in this show. But I'm not too worried about the gore since the story doesn't really call for it.

The gore that they do show however is pretty good. It's not everyday that you get to see people melt. FAMILY is one of those movies you should really give a chance. Just when I was expecting to see something silly and hilarious, I ended up watching something different. You can't have a John Landis horror movie without any humor. FAMILY does feature some laughs, but it doesn't carry the film like 'Deer Woman' did.

I pretty much expected humor knowing that John Landis directed this. The story sucked me in, I was pretty much glued to the TV till it ended. The script is clever, funny and interesting. I was entertained all the way through. Although There's a lot of dialog and very little violence, I can't complain really complain. The story was enough for me to enjoy it. The new season got off to a rocky start, but this movie definitely made up for that.

Overall: 7/10



THE DAMNED THING

Original Air Date: 27 October 2006 (Season 2, Episode 1)

Directed by: Tobe HooperCast: Sean Patrick Flanery, Marisa Coughlan, Brendan Fletcher, Eileen Barrett, Clint Carleton, Alexandra Carter, Ted Raimi

Plot: An unknown monstrous force descends upon a small Texas town, turning husband against wife, brother against sister, parent against child. Tortured by his own tragic past, Sheriff Kevin Reddle must overcome his horrific rage if he is to restore order.

REVIEW:

Alright, I personally don't believe that this was the right movie to kick start the new season. Last year we were first presented with INCIDENT ON AND OFF A MOUNTAIN ROAD. After seeing that one I couldn't get the image of Moonface out of my head. This year it's different, the movie that kick starts the new season just isn't as memorable. Don't get me wrong though, I did enjoy this movie. I love Tobe Hooper, he's made some great movies in the past. It's just that his latest efforts were, well, bad. Luckily for us, his new movie is actually pretty good. It's a step in the right direction if you ask me. Tobe Hooper's THE DAMNED THING has the right ingredients. It has an interesting story, good characters and a nice amount of gore.

The movie was inspired by Ambrose Bierce's classic short-story. Richard Christian Matheson wrote the screenplay, and he did a very good job with it. The movie is an apocalyptic tale of a monstrous force that devastates Sheriff Kevin Reddle's family. Sherrif Reddle (played by Sean Patrick Flanery) is a person who is haunted by his past. As a young boy Kevin witnessed the horrifying death of his family. Years later Kevin has his own family, and soon begins to relive that horrible night. The evil force that took his family years ago has returned to haunt him, and the entire small Texas town.

Right off the bat, I enjoyed this movie a whole lot better than his last entry DANCE OF THE DEAD. This one actually had a better story. Not to mention it had a pretty powerful/gory opening. You simply follow a man who is being haunted by this force referred to as "the damned thing". Only it doesn't just haunt him, it haunts the entire town. That's when people start freaking out and killing themselves (and each other). THE DAMNED THING features a lot of violence. This apocalyptic tale is too hard to ignore.

It reminded me of CIGARETTE BURNS and IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS in a sense that there's some sort of force that's causing people to lose it. Tempers fly and people die, that's just how it goes. Seemingly normal people go psycho in a matter of minutes, and it's very entertaining.

There's one scene in particular that drove me nuts. A guy commits suicide using a hammer. It's intense and funny at the same time. Things get worst from that point on. The biggest highlight in the movie for me was Ted Raimi. I'm sure you know Ted, you'd have to be crazy not to. He's the brother of Sam and a damn good actor. He played Possessed Henrietta in one of my favorite horror movies, EVIL DEAD 2. In THE DAMNED THING Ted Raimi plays a priest, who happens to be my favorite character. Seeing Ted on screen losing his mind made everything worth while. The rest is just purely entertaining. The only thing I didn't really agree with was the ending. Is it just me or does Hooper not know how to end his movies?

The ending reminded me too much of MORTUARY. Where you're introduced to all these characters and when the movie ends it just doesn't matter anyway. Like it was almost a waste of time. The giant muddy CGI monster didn't impress me either. As much as I enjoyed the movie, I don't think that this was the right movie to start the new season. I just didn't like the ending, but hey that's just my opinion. I'm sure a lot of you out there reading this may feel differently. In the end I did have fun. THE DAMNED THING was actually a good movie. Tobe Hooper appears to be going in the right direction. - DannyW.

Overall: 7/10

MORE REVIEWS TO COME!!!


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