Sunday, November 6, 2011

I (Still) Really Hate Rob Zombie's 'Halloween' Remake

Believe me - I realize that criticizing Rob Zombie's Halloween remake is a lot like kicking someone when they're already down. It's already been four years since the film was released and it's endured a pretty savage beating from both fans and critics alike. So what's the point? Why drag the corpse of this movie over the same old minefield of complaints? I haven't seen it since it was first released and after revisiting the original Halloween and a few of its sequels over the past few weeks, I wanted to see if maybe Zombie's take on the material played a little bit better now than it did back in 2007.

I have to start by saying that I don't have anything against Zombie as a filmmaker. I actually really enjoyed The Devil's Rejects and thought it showed a lot of promise in terms of his future as a writer/director. It's still the most confident entry in his filmography and whether you like it or not, it also established him as something of an auteur. I firmly believe that he's going to make a genuinely great film at some point. Unfortunately, the combination of Rob Zombie and the Halloween property represents a horribly flawed mismatch of director and material.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Look Back at 'Are You Afraid of the Dark?'

10/13 Update - Just wanted to let everyone know that if you enjoyed this post, my podcast Hey, Do You Remember...? just devoted our latest episode to Are You Afraid of the Dark?

Submitted for the approval of The Midnight Society...

Since Halloween is right around the corner, I wanted to revisit a series that was probably responsible for 70% of my nightmares as a kid. I was going to say 90% at first, but then I remembered how into alien abductions I was after reading Communion and holy fucking monster balls you guys... just do a google image search for the cover. Anyways, where was I...?

Right. So I think I was in fifth grade when my younger sister Erika came home from a sleepover and asked me if I'd ever heard of Snick. It was a block of programming that aired Saturday nights on Nickelodeon (get it?) and at this point in time the line-up included Clarissa Explains It All, Roundhouse, Ren & Stimpy, and... Are You Afraid of the Dark?

Thursday, June 16, 2011

'X-Men: First Class' was Surprisingly Solid

My experience with X-Men: First Class is probably going to sound like a lot of other people's. I was unbelievably skeptical of the film's premise, the characters they chose to fill out the team's roster, and the limited amount of time the filmmakers had to shoot it in. Lo and behold, it turned out to be one of the better entries in the X-Men series - and one of the most satisfying films I've seen all summer.


Sunday, April 17, 2011

'Scream' Should Have Stayed a Trilogy

Here's my main problem with Scream 4 - acknowledging the cliches of a genre or summarizing its current state is not the same thing as satirizing or commenting on it. 

This is a film that uses a couple of lines of dialogue to take shots at the Saw franchise (and torture porn in general) and denounce Hollywood's recent affinity for horror remakes and reboots, but brings absolutely nothing new to the table itself. Scream 4 utilizes the same bag of tricks as the past three films, believing that what worked a decade ago will still work today. It doesn't. Not for me. It has a few jump scares that manage to catch you off guard, but the sad fact is that this movie has nothing resembling genuine suspense or terror.