Friday, November 25, 2016

Phil Gets Tromatized: SQUEEZE PLAY (1979) from Troma Entertainment - November 20, 2016

Starring Jim Harris, Jennifer Hetrick, Rick Gitlin, Helen Campitrlli, Diana Valentien, Al Corley, Rick Khan, Melissa Michaels, Sonya, Jennings, Kaye Bramblett, Michael P. Moran, Brenda Kaplan
Written by Charles Kaufman, Haim Pekelis
Cinematography by Lloyd Kaufman
Edited by George T. Norris
Produced by Michael Herz, Lloyd Kaufman
Directed by Lloyd Kaufman (as Samuel Weil)
Released by Troma Entertainment

Greetings from Tromaville! So who's ready to go back in time to the 1970's to visit a true Troma classic? Well, congratulations kids because our destination is the year 1979 and today's review I'll be talking about one of their all-time greats. Kicking off their hilariously raunchy comedy series, today's installment proved to be very popular among Troma fans. SQUEEZE PLAY was the film that gave the new company its first big boxoffice hit and continues to attract new fans!

The film's official synopsis: It's a wild battle of the sexes as the "World Series of Laughs" heats up on and off the softball field. In the small town of Springborn the local all-male baseball team, The Beavers, celebrates each victory by bedding their wives, sweethearts and casual dates. Tired of this chauvinistic treatment, rebellious Samantha (Jenni Hetrick) organizes an all-girl team, the Beaverettes. She forces a battle of the sexes on the baseball diamond, pitting her buxom teammates against the dirty-playing Beavers.

The film broke all the rules and is part of all those sexy comedies that would follow for years to come, such as MEATBALLS, PORKY'S and ANIMAL HOUSE. And like with a lot of their other titles, there's a lot of social commentary to be found around the nudity, racy jokes, wet T-shirt competition, softballs flying into a man's bum, topless women, vulgar language, sexual situations, cartoon sound effects and killer soundtrack. Yup, I totally miss the 70's!!

Original Theatrical Poster (1979)
There's so much comedy going in the movie you'd have to watch it three times to catch them all, but it still holds up after all these years. The sexual innuendos, slapstick, sight gags plus the plethora of cock shots you can shack a stick at!! The film contains classic lines like, "Honey, I love you. What about all the children and silverware we're gonna have, huh?" Plus, I could I forget the greatest comedic line in all of cinematic history, "I don't care how big it is, I won't put it in my mouth!" By the way, all of this is courtesy of screenwriters Charles Kaufman (Lloyd's brother) and Haim Pekelis. Man, they don't write movies like this anymore!

The cast is hysterical while showing off their ability of keeping a straight face. Lead actress Jennifer Hetrick is hilarious as female protagonist. This was her feature film debut and had a very long career in television, appearing as Veronica Barrett in the soap opera classic General Hopital, Vash on Star Trek: The Next Generation and Corrinne Hammond on L.A. Law. Her co-star Jim Harris, who portrayed her boyfriend Wes in the film, appeared in another Troma feature WAITRESS! and was in AMERICAN NINJA 4: THE ANNIHILATION. Rick Gitlin only acted in a couple more films like CHEERLEADERS BEACH PARTY, A MARRIAGE and HOTSHOT before leaving the business. Same with Helen Campitelli, who played Sam's best friend Jaimie. This was her only film she did and then disappeared until 2011 when sh started acting in a couple of short films before appearing in an episode of The Underground Kings in 2014.

Originally, Troma had difficulty in getting the film into theaters. Then one fateful night Kaufman received a phone call from a theater owner in Norfolk, Virginia asking if he could have the movie. His second feature backed out and he was desperate. He sent the film out there where it played as a double feature with THE IN-LAWS. The following Monday the owner called back and told him that it was the funniest film he ever saw and the audience laughed their head off. After that, the movie went out to several theaters and became Troma's first hit. With the profits, Kaufman and Herz purchased the original Troma Building in Hell's Kitchen in New York, where they stayed until the moved into a new building in 2012.

SQUEEZE PLAY remains one of the most important films in the history of Troma and remains one of my all-time favorite raunchy comedies from the 70's!! It's interesting to see where the studio got their start and to see how much the company has grown since. Troma still remains as the only AND truly independent movie studio in America today! So go revisit this comedy classic today! 5 out of 5 stars!! Highly recommended!!

SQUEEZE PLAY is currently available on DVD at your local retailer and on the Troma website. To purchase this film as well as books, posters and Blu-Rays and DVDs, visit The film is on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Netflix and Video On Demand.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Friday, November 4, 2016

Phil's Horror Watch: 31 (2016) from Lionsgate - November 4, 2016

31 Blu-Ray Cover
Starring Sherri Moon Zombie, Malcom McDowell, Jeff Daniel Phillips, Meg Foster, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, Kevin Jackson, Judy Geeson, Jane Carr, Richard Brake, Pancho Moler, Elizabeth Daily (E.G. Daily), Ginger Lynn Allen, David Ury, Torsten Voges
Written by Rob Zombie
Cinematography by David Daniel
Edited by Glenn Garland
Produced by Rob Zombie, Mike Elliot, Andy Gould, Michael Sherman, Matthew Perniciaro, Eddie, Vaisman, Craig Walendziak
Directed by Rob Zombie
Released by Lionsgate

Musician and filmmaker Rob Zombie has had, let's just say, a very colorful and controversial career in the horror genre. His 2003 directorial debut HOUSE OF A 1000 CORPSES was a decent film, but it didn't live up to all the hype surrounding it. His follow-up and sequel THE DEVIL'S REJECTS was a masterpiece of horror cinema. Then he did the unthinkable: he remade John Carpenter's 1978 classic HALLOWEEN. Needless to say, the movie received mixed reviews, caused an avalanche of controversy among fans but made a killing at the boxoffice, taking in $59.3 million worldwide. The 2009 sequel HALLOWEEN II fared worse and performed poorly in theaters. In 2012, Zombie directed THE LORDS OF SALEM, a throwback to those classic witch and satanic films from the 1970's. Combining intriguing characters, magical and mystical themes and art house style of filmmaking, it looked like Zombie was growing as a director and poised to go on to make some really intriguing and fascinating movies. Then last month I saw his newest film 31 and all my hopes and expectations were flushed completely down the crapper.

The film's official synopsis: Five carnival workers are kidnapped and held hostage in an abandoned, Hell-like compound where they are forced to participate in a violent game, the goal is to survive twelve hours against a gang of sadistic clowns.

The main problem I have with Zombie's films is that the characters are all interchangeable and they all sound the same. They're dirty looking, cuss like a truck driver, sound deranged and are about as deep as a child's swimming pool. Since THE DEVIL'S REJECTS, the majority of his characters have been exactly the same! While LORDS OF SALEM was something completely different, it had a couple of his trademark characters but it didn't take away from the story nor its main protagonist. I was really looking forward in seeing what we was going to do as a filmmaker, but not anymore.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2016)
Now the film did have a few shining moments within the proverbial garbage that I was subjected to see. The opening scene was very fascinating to watch, as it was shot in black and white with actor Richard Brake as Doom-Head talking directly into the camera. It's actually a POV shot as we are seeing him through the victim's eyes, which I thought it was a very effective way  as to giving the audience an idea of the tone of the movie. And I have to admit, seeing E.G. Daily all sexy and batshit crazy was pretty damn cool! She's come a long way since playing Dottie in PEE-WEE'S BIG ADVENTURE that's for damn sure!

The film was originally crowdfunded, giving fans the opportunity of bringing Zombie's vision into fruition. A lot of them (plus the media) were speculating that the movie would be a sequel within the Firefly Family Universe (CORPSES and REJECTS) based on the teaser poster which had a bloody clown face, the title and the words "a Rob Zombie film." Others thought it was a movie about serial killer John Wayne Gacy, or perhaps another HALLOWEEN installment. Zombie later said that the title 31 refers to October 31, the Halloween holiday itself. The idea for the film came about when he read a statistic stating that Halloween is the number one day throughout the calendar year that more people go missing than any other day. Also, because of the tone of the screenplay, he wanted the visuals  of the film to be really down and dirty (like his movies didn't already look like this).

The movie had its premiere at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. Lionsgate picked up the distribution rights and gave it a limited theatrical release in September. Originally, the movie received an NC-17 from the MPAA twice before finally getting an R rating. Zombie assured fans that he would release an unrated director's version on home video.

To be honest 31 isn't Rob Zombie's best film to date. Is it gory? Yes. Is it grotesquely sickening? Absolutely. Is it profoundly disturbing that it feels like a snuff film? Pretty damn close. But the auteur doesn't bring anything new and fresh to his project. It looks, feels and sounds like your typical Rob Zombie film, basically your familiar with the characters because we've seen them in his other films. So if you were looking forward to watching this movie, I'm sorry to report that it's just not that good and your better off watching THE DEVIL'S REJECTS and LORDS OF SALEM. At least you'll enjoy those films!! 2 out of 5! Only watch if you're bored!

31 is available on both Blu-Ray and DVD. The movie is also available on iTunes, Video On Demand, digital download and Netflix.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the screaming!

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Phil sees MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN from 20th Century Fox - November 1, 2016

Filmmaker Tim Burton has had one of the most interesting careers in Hollywood. His unique vision has brought some of the most beloved, iconic and original films to the silver screen. PEE-WEE'S BIG ADVENTURE, EDWARD SCISSORHANDS, BEATLEJUICE, SLEEPY HOLLOW, BIG FISH and SWEENEY TODD: THE DEMON BARBER FROM FLEET STREET have all garnered worldwide acclaim, cult like fandom and huge boxoffice returns. He's delved into the world of comic books with both the highly successful BATMAN and the equally successful sequel BATMAN RETURNS. His stop-motion films CORPSE BRIDE, FRANKENWEENIE and A NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS have become unique children classics. But, he's also made some notable bombs such as PLANET OF THE APES, CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY, MARS ATTACKS!, DARK SHADOWS and ED WOOD (which is a personal favorite of mine). All this brings me to his latest project MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN, based on author Ransom Riggs's 2011 novel of the same name.

The film's official synopsis: When Jacob (Asa Butterfield) discovers clues to a mystery that stretches across time, he finds Miss Peregrine' Home for Peculiar Children. But the danger deepens after he gets to know the residents and learns about their special powers.

I found the movie interesting to watch, but it didn't really contain hardly any of Burton's trademark weirdness. The only real thing that I found somewhat Burton-esque was the evil monsters that plague Jacob and the other Peculiars. His directing style has become more polished and more mainstream looking. There's not a lot of sweeping shots of cities or gothic looking locations, nor crazy camera pans and such. It's a lot of basic set-ups and shots. Nothing that looks out of the ordinary, which to me isn't Tim Burton. He's an artists in the most purest way; he writes, he draws, he paints, he directs, he's really a talented individual. But somewhere along during his journey throughout Hollywoodland, he seems as if he lost his way. This, of course, is only my opinion but he was a better filmmaker when he was more eccentric and goth. Not that the movie was bad, but it just didn't look and feel like a Tim Burton movie.

Asa Butterfield was good in the role of Jacob, bringing some layering and personality to his performance. However let's be honest, Eva Green just steals the whole movie.  She just radiates when she's on the screen: her speech, her mannerisms, her intelligence, her body language, she is just a joy to watch. She is so damn talented that she could read me the Yellow Pages and I would be hooked! Plus she's a very attractive and sexy woman that you cannot take your eyes off of her when she walks into a scene! Lastly, Samuel L. Jackson as our main antagonist Baron. Seriously, he's having a lot of fun in this movie. He's the MAN folks! 'Nuff said!!

As I mentioned earlier, the movie is based on the young adult novel by Ransom Riggs. The book was published by Quirk Books on June 7, 2011. It went on to become a New York Times bestseller and reached the Number 1 spot in April of 2012. The sequel "Hollow City" was published in 2014, while the third chapter of the series "Library of Souls" was released in September of 2015. As to whether Burton will direct the other two adaptations is still unknown.

So to wrap this review up, MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN is an entertaining movie, but it's not Tim Burton's best work. I sincerely hope that one day he returns to his cinematic roots and craft a film that truly represents his voice, his vision and his eclectic personality. If your children really want to see the movie, then by all means take them. Nothing wrong with a family night out to the movies. 3 out of 5 stars! It's mediocre at best!

MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN is currently playing at theaters nationwide. Check your local listings to see if it is playing in at a theater near you.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Monday, October 31, 2016

Phil's Halloween Horror Watch: THE OTHER SIDE OF THE DOOR (2016) from 20th Century Fox - October 31, 2016

Starring Sarah Wayne Callies, Jeremy Sisto, Sofia Rosinsky, Logan Creran, Suchitra Pillai, Javier Botet
Written by Johannes Robert, Ernest Riera
Cinematography by Maxime Alexandre
Edited by Baxter
Produced by Rory Aitken, Alexandre Aja, Ben Pugh
Directed by Johannes Roberts
Released by 20th Century Fox

My Halloween Horror Watch marathon continues with another fantastic film that was very entertaining and horrifyingly chilling. I've heard good things about this movie and it took me awhile to finally get around to watching it. Filmed in India, THE OTHER SIDE OF THE DOOR explores the different beliefs and evils that exist in other parts of the world.

The film's official synopsis: A family lives an idyllic existence abroad until a tragic accident takes the life of their young son. The inconsolable mother learns of an ancient ritual that will bring him back to say a final goodbye. She travels to an ancient temple, where a door serves as a mysterious portal between two worlds. But when she disobeys a sacred warning to never open that door, she upsets the balance between life and death.

Sarah Wayne Callies is just an amazing and wonderful actress. Here, her character Maria is so lost without her son that she will do anything to get him back. Her depression and desperation gets the better of and now she must come to grips that her son is gone and she must move on or her family will die. To display all these different ranges of emotions requires talent and Callies nails her performance perfectly. I was such a huge fan of hers since The Walking Dead and now she can be seen on the new USA sci-fi show Colony so this makes me very happy.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2016)
Also turning in a great performance is Suchitra Pillai, who portrays Maria's nanny Piki. Wise, caring and devoted to Maria's family, she tells her of the ancient ritual but warns her of the consequences if she breaks the rules. Pillai is quite famous in her native home of India. She is an actress, singer, model, anchor and VJ. She started acting back in 1993 and has appeared in several Bollywood movies like DIL CHAHTA HAI (2001),  FASHION (2008) and FITOOR (2016). Actor Jeremy Sisto (who plays Maria's husband  Michael in the film)has had a long career in Hollywood, appearing in CLUELESS, SUICIDE KINGS, THIS SPACE BETWEEN US, ANGEL EYES, MAY, WRONG TURN, THIRTEEN, WAITRESS and ROBOT & FRANK.

The film was directed by English filmmaker Johannes Roberts. He made his feature film debut with the 2001 SANITARIUM. He made several movies in England such as ALICE (2002), HELLBREEDER and DARK HUNTERS (both in 2004). His first film made here in the states was the 2011 feature ROADKILL for the Maneater Series and was shown on the SyFy Channel. Here, Roberts exhibits his growth as a competent director, creating fear, scares and dread as well drama and character development. He captures all the beauty and horror of India and showcases their beliefs, their folklore and their rituals.

The movie was released on March 4, 2016 in limited release in select theaters. It grossed $2.8 million domestically and $4.5 million internationally. However, critical response has been less than warm. Despite these negative reviews, I thoroughly enjoyed the film and was captivated by its story, characters and directing.

THE OTHER SIDE OF THE DOOR is a brilliant, entertaining and horrifying movie that will haunt your Halloween season! If you want to see something different in your horror film, then make sure you add this title to your library! 3 1/2 out of 5 stars! Recommended viewing!!

THE OTHER SIDE OF THE DOOR is available on both Blu-Ray and DVD. The movie is also available on iTunes, Video On Demand, digital download and Netflix.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the screaming!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Phil attends a special screening of STREETS OF VENGEANCE at the Shire Community Space in Modesto - October 22, 2016

If you've been following my blog for all these years then you know that I'm a huge supporter of local independent filmmaking. A&P Productions is an independent film production company based out in Modesto, California. Founded by power couple Paul Ragsdale and Angelica De Alba, they make their films the old fashioned way; meaning they write, shoot, edit, produce and direct all themselves which is wonderfully inspiring. They're latest film caught my attention a couple of months ago and I knew that I had to review it. Lucky for me, they were having a special screening of the film at The Shire Community Space in Modesto. Taking inspiration from films like SAVAGE STREETS, ANGEL and ALLEY CATS with the late night format of USA's Up All Night, STREETS OF VENGEANCE is a perfect blend of 80's homage and local DIY filmmaking!

The film's official synopsis: Former adult film star Mila (Delawna McKinney) is attacked by a misogynistic cult known as The Sword. She turns vigilante and puts a group of bad-ass girls together and seeks revenge.

Since the release of GRINDHOUSE back in 2007, there have a plethora of retro styled horror and exploitation films that have been amazing. These releases include HOUSE OF THE DEVIL (2009), HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN (2011), THE SLEEPER (2011), THE FINAL GIRLS (2015), WE ARE STILL HERE (2015) and the movies from Canada's Astron 6: FATHER'S DAY (2011), MANBORG (2011) and THE EDITOR (2014). Here, director Ragsdale continues this trend but adds some new ingredients into the mix. While it feels and sounds like your classic 1980's revenge action movie, it looks like a like a modern day film. There's modern day cars, cellphones, computers and other forms of technology that reminds viewers that the film takes place in today's world of San Francisco. But, by having the grittiness of those films that inspire it and the totally awesome 80's synth soundtrack courtesy of Vestron Vulture, it takes you back to those crazy fun-filled days of Reganomics era America.

Ragsdale's directing is fantastic; providing that perfect balance between action and drama. His set-ups and compositions are incredible, creating some very iconic scenes that would make excellent lobby cards (hint hint Paul). He is able to tell a very compelling story (which he wrote as well) with complex and often hilarious characters and grotesque villains while offering the audience some cool action and gory death scenes. Credit also goes to cinematographer Dan Zampa who does an outstanding job of capturing it all. His visuals are sharp, clean and his lighting is very reminiscent of those found in Dario Argento's films like SUSPIRIA, DEEP RED and PHENOMENON. Truly a very talented cameraman and photographer.

As for the cast, I have nothing but absolute praise for them! Standouts for me include lead actress Delawna McKinney as our protagonist Mila, who shines bright as our heroine. She brings naïveté, vulnerability as well as strength, determination and guts! Paige Jenkins as Amber is sweet, kind and a loyal friend to Mila (she also did the special effects for the insanely sickening "Penis Scene" which was absolutely freaking impressive). Cassidy Irwin's Liv had the best one-liners in the film! She was hysterical and badass as well and I loved it when she appeared on-screen. Brian, played by Anthony lava To'omata proves that the average joe can become a hero and get to kiss the girl. Awesome job by this great actor.

Now you can't have a good movie without some bad guys and this film has the luxury of having not one, but two evil antagonists. While I won't mention their names due to revealing spoilers, but my hat goes off to both of them for their performances. These two are the most diabolical, disgusting, and deplorable human beings to ever appear in a movie. Seriously, these guys are just plain evil and I loved hating them while I was watching the movie. Like I said, I can't mention them due to ruining the plot revelations, but again, tremendous job fellas.

Another interesting fact is that the movie also features cameos from some of today's most popular adult film stars. So look for Alexis Amore and Sophie Dee in one scene together. Also having a small part in the film is Joann Angel, founder of Burning Angel Studio. Angel plays Nina, who is the catalyst for one of our antagonist going batshit crazy. The other actress to appear in the movie is the adult film icon Ginger Lynn Allen as Roxy Carmichael. I loved Ginger in her role and I am very happy and excited to see her being used properly and to see her acting in a film! I'm sorry but Rob Zombie's use of her in both THE DEVIL'S REJECTS and his latest project 31 is appalling. She is a legend, she is a gifted actress, and she is talented! She's completely wasted in those films. Here, she gets to show off her range as an actress and have real dialogue. I applaud Ragsdale for giving her the opportunity to display her acting capability. A great performance by this living legend!

I mentioned earlier that Ragsdale wrote the film's screenplay, which has a strong feminist message within the dialogue. Women have the right to do what they want with their bodies and shouldn't be slammed with vulgar displays of discrimination. Body shaming, name calling and misogyny are not tolerated. I am a big supporter of women's rights and if they wish to work in the sex industry or make adult films or whatever, then that's their right. Despite its over-the-top violence, gore and bloodshed, the movie acts as a reminder for all women to be and feel empowered and ignore society's so-called and outdated "standards" on what and how a woman should be and act like. It's their lives and their choices people, so if you don't like it, well, tough shit. Get over it!

After the screening, they had DVDs of the movie for sale as well as three different type posters. Of course, I went TOTAL fanboy and bought it all. I then had the cast and crew autograph everything plus made some new friends as well. This was my first real movie event that I've attended in a long time and overall, I had a total blast at the screening!

STREETS OF VENGEANCE is my favorite underground independent film of 2016!! It's only a matter of time before the film takes over the world! Till then, I'm gonna watch my DVD copy over and over again! Also, keep your eyes peeled here because in the very near future, I will be conducting interviews with several members of the cast and crew! If you see this film playing in a town near you, I would strongly suggest you see this movie!! 5 out of 5 stars!! Very highly recommended!!

STREETS OF VENGEANCE will be soon be screening at film festivals throughout the country. In the meantime, you can follow the movie on Facebook and checkout it's IMDb page and look for A&P Productions on Instagram.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Phil's Halloween Horror Watch: THE BOY (2016) from STX Entertainment - Oct. 11, 2016

Starring Lauren Cohan, Rupert Evans, James Russell, Jim Norton, Diana Hardcastle, Ben Robson, Jett Klyne, Stephanie Lemelin
Screenplay by Stacey Menear
Cinematography by Daniel Pearl
Edited by Brian Berdan
Produced by Matt Berenson, Jodyne Herron, Gary Lucchesi, Tom Rosenberg, Jim Wedaa
Directed by William Brent Bell
Released by STX Entertainment

Welcome back my faithful followers to another installment of my horror movie marathon! Tonight I have another fright-tastic flick that will surely make you quiver with fear! Or at least entertain you for about 90 minutes. So let me tell you all about THE BOY from STX Entertainment.

The film's official synopsis: Greta (Lauren Cohan) is a young American woman who takes a job as a nanny in a remote English village, only to discover that the family's 8-year-old is a life-sized doll that the parents care for just like a real boy, as a way to cope with the death of their actual son 20 years prior. After violating a list of strict rules, a series of disturbing and inexplicable events bring Greta's worst nightmare to life, leading her to believe that the doll is actually alive.

Now here is horror film that truly delivers the goods! First, you have a smart and scary script courtesy of screenwriter Stacey Menear. It's rare to see a film that contains a unique and original script like this coming out of Hollywood. The story is a perfect blend of horror, thrills and mystery. Plus, we have these interesting and realistic characters that we actually care about. What's that you say? A horror film with characters that we are emotionally invested in? Yes, the end is nigh my friends! Also worth noting, it has one of the best twist endings I have ever seen in a horror movie! Not since THE SIXTH SENSE have I been caught off guard like this! Brilliant ending!

Original Theatrical Poster (2016)
Actress Lauren Cohan's performance as Greta is fantastic, but then again, I wouldn't expect anything less from the woman who plays Maggie Green from my favorite television show The Walking Dead. She's naïve in the beginning of the movie; thinking that this family with the life-sized doll are completely nuts. But then, she starts to believe in the possibility that this doll is alive as recent events persuades her to change her mind. The final act we see her become the heroine as she must not only fight to save her life but of her new love interest Malcolm, portrayed by Rupert Evans.

For a time filmmaker William Brent Bell was on my shitlist, reason being was because he directed the damn awful THE DEVIL INSIDE back in 2012. Now if you've been following my blog, you will remember that I was so pissed that film sucked so bad. In fact, I wrote that it was, "2012's worst horror film to be released" and to, "let this movie rot in Hell for all eternity." Yup, I hated it that damn much! Now, I love the man! The directing style was flawless; each set-up, every camera angle, every composition told the story of this young nanny being tormented by this little doll. Superb work by Bell people!! He has redeemed himself!

The film was released to theaters on January 22 of this year and went on to gross over $35.7 million here in the states and another $26.6 million in the international market. Overall, its worldwide box office take was $62.4 million. Not too bad considering the budget was only about $10 million but it received mixed reviews from movie goers and film critics. It opened up against THE 5th WAVE and DIRTY GRANDPA in the same weekend.

THE BOY is one fantastic film to watch this Halloween!! It's psychological, it's thrilling, it's scary and most important, it's fun and entertaining to watch!! So bust out the popcorn and drinks, sit back and relax and enjoy watching this movie! 4 out of 5 stars!! Highly recommended!!

THE BOY is available on both Blu-Ray and DVD. The movie is also available on iTunes, Video On Demand, digital download and Netflix.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the screaming!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Phil's Halloween Horror Watch: PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES (2016) from Screen Gems/Sony Pictures - October 10, 2016

Starring: Lily James, Sam Riley, Jack Huston, Bella Heathcote, Ellie Bamber, Millie Brady, Suki Waterhouse, Sally Phillips, Douglas Booth, Matt Smith
Based on the novel Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith
Written by Burr Steers
Cinematography by Remi Adefarasin
Edited by Padraic McKinley
Produced by
Directed by Burr Steers
Released by Screen Gems/Sony

Hello again folks and welcome back to horror movie marathon! Now I'm sure you're all familiar with the name Jane Austen, since many of you (including me) had to read her novels back when we were in school. "Sense and Sensibility", "Mansfield Park" and "Emma" are literary treasures, but her most famous novel is "Pride and Prejudice." Hailed as an instant classic, the book has been adapted in many other mediums ranging from the theatre to television and the silver screen. In 2009, writer Seth Grahame-Smith combined Austen's 1813 novel with modern day zombies to create his parody novel entitled "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies", which he cited Austen as co-author. It became a huge success, prompting Hollywood to come calling. Then finally in January of 2016, the film PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES was finally released to theaters.

The film's official synopsis: A zombie outbreak has fallen upon the land in this re-imagining of Jane Austen’s classic tale of the tangled relationships between lovers from different social classes in 19th century England. Feisty heroine Elizabeth Bennet (Lily James) is a master of martial arts and weaponry and the handsome Mr. Darcy (Sam Riley) is a fierce zombie killer, yet the epitome of upper class prejudice. As the zombie outbreak intensifies, they must swallow their pride and join forces on the blood-soaked battlefield in order to conquer the undead once and for all.

Original Theatrical Poster (2016)
OK, so I have a confession to make and here it is: I loved this movie!! This was not what I had expected it to be. It was freaking awesome!! It had it all!! Beautiful British women dressed in Victorian clothes who did Kung Fu moves and killed zombies! Blood and gore galore!! Humor and horror blended perfectly together!! A cool story and  interesting, funny and bad ass characters!! And of course, it had zombies!! Yup, I absolutely loved watching this movie!!

Lily James is incredible as our heroine Elizabeth, who is both breathtakingly beautiful and a bad ass warrior! Strong, independent and opinionated and knows how to open a can of whoop ass on zombies, Jamesalso brings a little bit of vulnerability to her character, especially when she meets Sam Riley's Colonel Fitzwilliam Darcy. Like Austen's original novel, it isn't quite love at first sight but soon their love grows while trying to survive the plague of zombies. Another fun character was Parson Collins played by the great Matt Smith. Smith made a name for himself portraying the Twelth Doctor on the long running BBC sci-fi television series Doctor Who. Here, he's playing against type, making Parsons wimpy, cowardly and hopefully romantic. And he's very funny too.

While the book received mass amounts of rave reviews, the film itself performed rather poorly at the boxoffice. The budget was a staggering $28 million but only reaped in a measly $10.9 million in tickets sales. While there was a huge fan base for the novel, it translate into theater goers which is quite a shame. The film stayed pretty faithful to the original source material and it was entertaining as hell, but it didn't bring in the audience that it was trying to attract.

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES is an action packed, zombie crawling, blood drenched, fun-filled ride for the whole family!! Pay no attention to those naysayers out there in the cold, dark world!! Check out this movie for yourself and form your own opinion, but don't be surprised when it's over, you'll want to watch it over again! 4 out of 5 stars!! Highly recommended!!

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES is available on both Blu-Ray and DVD. The movie is also available on iTunes, Video On Demand, digital download and Netflix.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the screaming!