This was filmed in the Republic of Ireland.
The trailers give away the fact that this is not as straightforward as it seems. From the get-go, the film lets us know things are being manipulated by an office full of workers. Bradley Whitford ( The Handmaid's Tale ) is there, backed up by Joss Whedon's familiar faces like Amy Acker and Tom Lenk ( Buffy: Season 6 ).
The climax, however, includes a final twist that shows this to be more than just a standard meta-thriller. Even knowing there are two stories that eventually overlap, there are still surprises to be had. All in all, an amazing piece of work. Knowing that the creators are responsible for Cloverfield and Buffy: Season 4 may allow you to see additional references ...
There are lots of twists - perhaps too many. It tries too hard - but without a big budget (no stars = no publicity) it only had a very complex script to reel in the viewers.
This was directed by Wes Craven , and needed lots of re-shoots. Unfortunately the result of the re-editing is a disjointed effort.
Katniss also befriends the boy next door - sole survivor of the murdered family. Of course, in this kind of film there is a nasty secret. It is all a bit predictable, but no worse than similar shockers Silent House or The Pact . In fact, this is more mainstream version - for some reason it was given a 15 certificate in the UK, but it is a pretty tame, PG-13 film.
This is certainly not the most original story, since it was made twice by Hollywood about twenty years ago ( Jennifer 8). The film is let down by an over-long climax - The third act seems to go on forever!
This is a Spanish film, produced by Guillermo Del Torro . But despite this eminent horror movie credential, there is no supernatural element. Thus, it can technically be categorised as a crime thriller, not a horror one.
This was based on a Stephen King short story. It is a suspenseful effort, despite being a made-for-TV movie.
Despite its cliched nature, it actually gets better in the third act. This is because Carrie Fisher has some great scenes in it - perhaps she rewrote her own dialogue (as she did in Time Guardian
Stitches is a second-rate clown played by English stand-up comedian Ross Noble. He performs at an 8-year-old's birthday party, but the group of kids play cruel tricks on him and he dies in a horrific accident as a result.
The film jumps forward six years, until the characters are all supposedly 14 years old. The fact that they are played by unknowns helps it work, but the actors are all bound to be ten years older than their characters.
The birthday boy, now a Harry Potter lookalike, is terrified of clowns and birthdays. But eventually his friends talk him into holding a party so he can invite the girl of his dreams. Naturally, the party grows, and then gets gate-crashed by a killer clown back from the dead!
This was directed by the same man who directed the shocking Korean film, Oldboy . He has added some incredible visual touches. It is basically a vampire film without the trappings of vampirism. The blood-lust is human, not supernatural, and the result is a stylish display of psychopathic violence.
This has a few similarities with Single White Female , but it is a made-for-television movie-of-the-week effort. It smacks of the old based on a true story films that proliferated on daytime television a few years ago, although it seems too generic to be about a specific true-crime event.
Like most made-for-TV entertainment, this is aimed at a female audience. As a result the main characters are female, with the stepfather and the cops almost thrown in as afterthoughts. While relatively few Hollywood movies pass the Bechdel test, this is not the same for TV movies.
This is John Carpenter 's comeback, eight years after Ghosts of Mars - but it is boring and predictable. The cast of B-List starlets (up-and-comers, like the sidekick from the 2010 Nikita TV show) are nice to look at ... But the Killer is just bland. Carpenter is the king of the slasher film, he gave us Halloween , arguably the first and best example of the genre. Then he moved away from the teenagers in danger trope and gave us grown men in danger in The Thing . He seems to have forgotten everything he taught us. This just adds to the disappointment.
Someone with a crossbow and pack of hunting dogs starts to bump them off. There is no chainsaw or hockey mask - this killer wears a ghillie suit, which makes him the most convincing threat in the genre!
What separates this from a revenge thriller is the apparent lack of justice. The victim's pain is inversely proportional to the amount they deserve it.
A few days later, her sister ( Caity Lotz ) arrives to look for her. Nobody bothers reporting her missing, because of her drug habit. This is perhaps the first major break in suspension of disbelief, but when things get worse she has to get help from Police detective Casper Van Dien ( Starship Troopers ). Of course, nobody believes her ...
This is a small independent film, written and directed by a relative unknown. The direction is decent and quite suspenseful, although the incidental music is a bit overwhelming. However, the story itself is cobbled together from lots of scenes in other films. The cop starts doing spirit photography, and the Last Girl happens to know a genuine psychic medium in town. The biggest debt this shows to anything is What Lies Beneath , because the film takes a complete change of direction in the final act.
A private investigator, Arbogast (Martin Balsam - ) goes looking for Marion. While it may seem to be a modern trope that the saviour figure dies, Arbogast is a sacrificial lamb just as much as Marion Crane herself. While she brings attractiveness, he brings toughness - qualities that make their inevitable deaths at the killer's hands to be particularly shocking.
Marion's sister Lila ( Vera Miles ) is also investigating the disappearances. She plays the equivalent of what might be called the Final Girl, although in this pre-feminist era she has a man to help her out.
A young woman ( Meg Tilly ) befriends Norman and gets herself hired to help out at the motel. The role was originally intended for Jamie Lee Curtis , who turned it down because she had already done Halloween . Is she stalking him, or is he stalking her?
This is a worthy successor to the original. While this is a full-colour effort, in contrast to the black and white original, the film-makers did not try to capitalise on the new technology and try to out-gore the original. Instead they stuck to the original's Hitchcockian suspense. An innovative script ties up a few loose ends but leaves the story open for a continuation of the franchise.
Finally we get to meet Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins - The Black Hole ). The initial shots of the motel include references to the events of the previous film, and we even get a flashback clip of that movie's epilogue. Norman's hobby is to poison the local bird life so they make new subjects for his taxidermy. Yes, as the flashback indicates that Norman is no longer just a passive accomplice in the crimes committed by his mother's personality.
The nun, whose initials are MC, has the same hairstyle as Marion Crane ( Janet Leigh ). Her mental issues compliment Norman's, although while she is given psychiatric treatment he is not. Yes, nobody bothered to replace the shrink from the previous film.
Duke gets hired as the temporary manager at the motel. Before long it is full of sexy topless young women who are excellent slasher fodder for Norman's mother. Duke himself is a thief who wants a promotion into blackmailer. Yes, the story has an actual up-front villain this time.
This was directed by Perkins himself, who does a good job if it. As an actor he can sleepwalk through the role he has played for two and a half decades. The real breakout star is Fahey, who unfortunately never really shined as much in any of his later roles.
A private investigator, Arbogast (William H. Macy - ) goes looking for Marion. While it may seem to be a modern trope that the saviour figure dies, Arbogast is a sacrificial lamb just as much as Marion Crane herself. While she brings attractiveness, he brings toughness - qualities that make their inevitable deaths at the killer's hands to be particularly shocking.
Marion's sister Lila ( Julianne Moore ) is also investigating the disappearances. She plays the equivalent of what might be called the Final Girl, although since this was written in the pre-feminist era she has a man to help her out.
The director, Gus Van Sant , took this directly from the same shooting script that Hitchcock used on the original film thirty-eight years previously. The one thing that was updated was the amount of money which was stolen. Apart from that, the result is strikingly similar.
The film's dramatic storyline has a rape-and-revenge subplot. Mary is sexually assaulted, and takes a horrific revenge on her attacker. While the distributors focus on this subplot so they can safely categorise the film as horror, it is a character drama rather than a slasher film or a torture porn flick.
This was written and directed by the Soska Sisters , and is a prime example of their reinvention of the horror genre.
The man repeatedly suggests that she take him to a hospital. After her own ordeal, a trip to a doctor would probably be a good idea. Also, the police would be far better suited to getting the truth out of him and rescuing the other girls than she would. However, we must suspend our disbelief and embrace the unlikely premise of this story.
The story is intercut with flashbacks, found footage of the girl on a day out at the beach with her boyfriend and sister. This adds a sense of unreality to the movie, because it leaves us unsure of how much the Untruthful Narrator trope will be invoked.
This is shot entirely in the French language, with subtitles in English. The cast and crew were all French, with a couple of exceptions. So why is it not listed among the Giallo genre efforts? The director, Paul Verhoeven , is Dutch - but in the 1980s and 1990s he made a string of big-budget Hollywood hits, so he is an International film-maker rather than a European one. This movie was originally intended as an English-language effort, but Verhoeven was unable to find a middle-aged American actress who had the big-name recognition necessary for the project.
Psychologist Wes Bentley ( Hunger Games ) takes an orphaned young girl under his wing. He trains her like Hit-Girl in Kick-Ass , and she grows up to be Abigail Breslin . Then he sets her loose as live bait to entrap Alexander Ludwig ( Vikings ) and his gang of Frat-boy types who play The Most Dangerous Game with young blonde women in the woods.
Breslin has been menaced by serial killers before, in Scream Queens . And in all fairness, even though that show was played entirely for laughs it is a lot more realistic than this effort. The lead actress is petite, slender and entirely unconvincing in her fight scenes.
The first story this movie tells is about a tweenage girl ( Taissa Farmiga ) and her single mother ( Malin Akerman ) who used to be a Scream Queen actress in teen slasher movies. The girl gets orphaned, and spends the rest of the story trying to get over her loss.
The orphan and her friend ( Nina Dobrev ) get roped into attending a public showing of the slasher movie that made her mother infamous. Things go wrong, and the tweenagers find themselves magically transported to inside the movie. This is basically a parody of the Friday the 13th series.
When the slaughter really begins, this film reveals its third genre. The scares and gore are on a par with the original films that this seeks to parody. In fact, the originals are tongue-in-cheek and have nothing to compare with the slo-mo running-while-on-fire scene.
This is a good film that works on several levels. It is even set up for a sequel, which has yet to appear. However, the mix of genres makes it an uneven ride.
Our heroine gets stood up, but luckily she meets another girl who offers to cheer her up. The girl takes her to a bar, and they end up hanging out with some very rapey dudes. One thing leads to another, and we end up in a rape-and-revenge thriller.
The storyline is predictable, but the high point is actually some Tarantino-esque dialogue between the girls.
A privileged middle-class woman ( Sarah Butler ) goes to an isolated cabin in the woods, just like in all the best slasher films. She is menaced by some working-class men, who subject her to an attack not entirely un-reminiscent of Deliverance.
Does she do what Jodie Foster did in The Accused, or what victims do every week in Law & Order: SVU? No, she goes on a rampage that owes as much to torture-porn like the Saw Series as it does to the original film this is based on. Think Turistas AKA Paradise Lost - but the bikini babe is the murderer while the yokels (white, not Brazilian, so it is not racist) are the victims.
The violent aspects of the film are exaggerated beyond all realism. One victim is cornered in the most filthy bathroom ever - seriously, this place has never been flushed never mind cleaned! And the girl somehow overpowers a man twice her weight and carries him around.
This film follows some of the rules of the traditional horror movie. For example, the protagonist is a Final Girl ( Amanda Seyfried ) and the antagonist is a demonic monster that kills teenagers. However, the monster does not chase gorgeous cheerleaders like Jennifer ( Megan Fox ) - she IS the monster!
Jennifer is abducted by a music band, who sacrifice her as part of a Satanic pact. Unfortunately she is not a virgin, so she comes back as a demonic monster. This is a typical setup for a rape-and-revenge story. What makes it a more typical horror movie is the fact that instead of seeking revenge on her abusers, she attacks innocent victims like Kyle Gallner ( Beautiful Creatures ).
The Final Girl is Jennifer's nerdy friend, Needy. Their friendship, and its degeneration as the story progresses, is the core of the film. In other words, this is really an inferior version of Ginger Snaps .
The real problem with the film is that it seems uncertain of what genre it is. It is set up as a thriller, but the Second Act lacks conflict between the leads so it is really a drama. The title character's backstory is intended as sympathetic, but she is clearly the antagonist. This at least allows the reactive protagonist to shine.
Years later, the survivor is still suffering from PTSD. She works in a drycleaners, and befriends a male cow-orker. Unfortunately someone starts to stalk her, dressed as the original killer.
Has the original killer come back for revenge? Is she being gaslighted by a copycat? Or is this a case of the untruthful narrator, when it turns out that the protagonist and antagonist are the same person?
Things hot up in the final act, when we find out who the killer is. The climax is a kill-crazy massacre, which makes up for the lacklustre suspense of the previous hour.
The rape may not happen, but the revenge is certainly a thing. In fact, it is pre-emptive so it is not really revenge.
Power corrupts, and the girls are no exception. They use their superhuman strength to go on a killing spree. Specifically they target men they met in the bar on that night. Partly because those men are suspects in their killings, but mostly just out of mean-spiritedness.
Instead of a creepy old man, the Surgeon is a younger man. Sort of like Herbert West in Reanimator , but not such a tight-ass.
Is this appraisal too blunt? What if Clancy Brown (The Kurgan in Highlander (1986) ) played the lead role instead of her father, and had a gender-neutral selection of victims? Perhaps the closest thing to this is Jennifer's Body , another empowering female-led horror movie which, had it not been sunk by a terrible marketing campaign, might have received the same acclaim as this film.
Margot Robbie produced this movie, but turned down the lead role because it would bring too much comparison with Harley Quinn in Birds of Prey . A better comparison might be between PYW and Joker (2019) , which similarly explores mental illness and revenge. In contrast, BOP is simply an attempt at creating a female Deadpool .
In the second act, the main character starts to get over her mental issues. She chooses to be in a relationship with a boy she knew in college. The movie changes tone, and becomes a parody of rom-com films.
This leads into the final act, where expectations are subverted several times. It is all cleverly done, but it is not as clever as some people seem to think.
Is this a long-awaited critique of raunch culture of the first decade of this century? Well, Veronica Mars did it first, and did it better. Secondly, that raunch culture was the freedom-loving Girl Power of the Nineties which was destroyed by Nipplegate and the Religious Right in the USA.
Evoking the Magic Negro cliché, the token Native American character is a medicine man. He tries to keep the girl’s soul in her body. Unfortunately she ends up soul-possessed by a vengeance spirit - like in The Crow , but with the spirit of Apache chieftain Mangas Coloradas instead of a demon.
Given the played-out nature of the genre and the low budget of the film, this is actually quite a watchable film.
The town is so small that the only person of colour is Brandon Jay McLaren ( Tucker & Dale Versus Evil ), the Canadian actor who always fills the role in this kind of thing. Teenagers got abducted and murdered. Joan and her friend were the final girls, tortured but not sexually assaulted. Just torture porn, not pornographic torture.
In the modern day, someone starts to kill off the townsfolk. Joan sees someone dressed as the original serial killer. Is she halucinating? Is he returned from the dead? Or is it just a copycat?
Angela is kept in the militia's sex dungeon. She befriends one of the sex slaves, Vanya ( Dominique Provost ). Unfortunately this is not a happy-happy movie.
Rather than just turn him in to the authorities, the woman abducts him and tries to torture him into confessing. Her use of a hammer is reminiscent of the actress's most famous role - as Lizbo Salamander in the Swedish TV adaptation of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo series.
This is not just a straightforward rape-and-revenge. Part of it is the character development of Danny Dyer's character. At the start he is a harmless fellow who cannot put a dying animal out of its misery. However, by the end of the story he has evolved into a bloodthirsty killer.
Sadie ( Olivia Wilde ) is a sadist, who gets a thrill from torturing and robbing people. What makes this socially acceptable, so the audience can get a thrill out of it without any pangs of guilt, is her choice of victims. She targets men who she is told are abusive to their wives, although one time she alters her modus operandi and targets a neglectful mother whose child is in a bad way.
The protagonist's backstory leads into the climactic third act. It turns out that her husband (Morgan Spector - ) was an abuser who taught her home-made first aid and gave her a high tolerance for pain. She also learned survivalist camping skills from him, and taught herself krav maga from a manual he owned. These skills come in useful as she tries to track him down for a final violent confrontation.
A young Tom Hardy ( The Dark Knight Rises ) and his mixed-race gang of street thugs once terrorised Selma Blair . Now it seems that she has come back for revenge, in a sadistic manner reminiscent of Saw .
This is set in New York City - perhaps the seediest and most unpleasant version of the city presented since Lucio Fulci's 1970s gore-fest The New York Ripper . One should note, then, that it was in actual fact mostly shot in Belfast.