Movie Review: JAKOB’S WIFE: Crampton and Fassenden are a believable couple in quiet crisis mode, but this vampire movie doesn’t know what it wants to be.

 

jakobs wife

When it comes to vampires, I’m more or less a purist. There are vampire movies I love, vampire movies I hate. It all comes down to my own personal take on vampires, and what media aligns closest with that take. So a big yes for Martin and The Addiction, and a big hell no for Twilight, Underworld, and any kind of take that involves yet another tired retread of Anne Rice’s beautiful, but tortured, immortal souls. I’m always looking for vampire movies where the premise grabs me. Blood Red Sky did that a year or so ago, and I really enjoyed it, and then along came Jakob’s Wife.

Continue reading “Movie Review: JAKOB’S WIFE: Crampton and Fassenden are a believable couple in quiet crisis mode, but this vampire movie doesn’t know what it wants to be.”

Movie Review: SKINAMARINK: Don’t go into this movie looking a new Paranormal Activity, this is anything but a traditional moviegoing experience.

 

SKINAMARINK

I don’t think I’ve ever been so conflicted about writing a movie review as I am with Kyle Edward Ball’s debut, Skinamarink. I think I’d only heard the name a couple of weeks ago, and then I heard it was playing an extremely limited engagement here in the Twin Cities metro region of Minnesota. I’d heard it was an indie horror – which is personally my favourite kind of horror movie – and the premise seemed a little intriguing, but it wasn’t until my daughter asked me to go that I decided to do it, rather than wait for it to stream. So, on a chilly, damp January night, we headed to the nearby Art-Deco inspired cinema, and … well, read on …

Continue reading “Movie Review: SKINAMARINK: Don’t go into this movie looking a new Paranormal Activity, this is anything but a traditional moviegoing experience.”

Movie Review: A MAN CALLED OTTO – predictable to a fault, with one-dimensional, annoying characters, but survives on Tom Hanks’s touching performance.

man called otto

Our generation’s Jimmy Stewart is back. Tom Hanks doesn’t seem like he’s going to throw in the towel any time soon, and most people wouldn’t complain too much about that. I guess I’m one o them – though I wouldn’t say I’m an ardent fan, I’ve liked most movies of his that I’ve seen, and I’ve enjoyed his performances too. While he hasn’t been that adventurous in his choice of roles, that hardly makes him unique in Hollywood. Most actors end up playing it safe one way or another. In A Man Called Otto, Hanks doesn’t quite play against type, and from the trailer, you all know how this movie will develop. It’s no spoiler for me to tell you you’d be pretty safe in your assumptions.

If you don’t know, A Man Called Otto is the American remake of the 2015 Swedish movie A Man Called Ove, which is itself from the book of the same name by Fredrik Backman. I haven’t read that book, nor the movie, so I can’t measure the Tom Hanks version against them for this review.

Like you, astute viewer, I kind of suspected how the movie was going to play out from the trailer. Grumpy widower Otto has the rough edges sanded off by his interaction with the friendly people around him. It’s a story as old as the hills. Sometimes it’s done well (As Good As It Gets, starring Jack Nicholson), sometimes poorly, as in, well, A Man Called Otto. Continue reading “Movie Review: A MAN CALLED OTTO – predictable to a fault, with one-dimensional, annoying characters, but survives on Tom Hanks’s touching performance.”

Movie Review: MEGAN – If you can get past the obvious Chucky parallel and a familiar storyline, you might enjoy this as much as I did.

megan

With no fanfare whatsoever, I’m happy to say the At The Foothills of Madness movie review website is back open for business. It’s been over three years since the last entry, and here we are again. COVID put a dent in my movie watching, but it’s not like I wasn’t watching movies during or since. No, I guess I lost my enthusiasm, or at least transferred it to a different medium: since July 2020 I’ve been writing a horror novel that has since ballooned into epic length, with only a faint light at the end of the tunnel as of January 2023. Oh yeah, and also since then I have two horror anthologies on Amazon: HEAL THYSELF (pub. 2021), a three-story anthology featuring the unexpected consequences of time travel, and PLAYLIST vol.1 (pub. 2022), a five-story book where all the stories are titled from songs you may know. But anyway, the reviews are back on tap. I couldn’t die knowing Charlie’s Angels was the last review I ever wrote. And so, with no further ado, welcome back to the site, and I’m glad we’re both here.

I might as well start with an obvious negative: Blumhouse Pictures suck. I mean, I know they produce profit-making, small budget horror, and I know a lot of people like (or at least tolerate) what they make. Me, I can’t stand most of what I’ve seen from them, to the point where my interest in anything they release is on the low floors. This includes Get Out –  yeah I said it. Not as much of a fan as everyone else, it appears. So when I saw the crappy trailers (that fucking dance), and heard it was from Blumhouse, I thought I’d even skip it once it hits the streaming services. Does the world really need a variation of Chucky? I know I don’t.
Continue reading “Movie Review: MEGAN – If you can get past the obvious Chucky parallel and a familiar storyline, you might enjoy this as much as I did.”

COMIC BOOK REVIEW – FANTASTIC FOUR 232: “BACK TO THE BASICS!”

In 1981, years before the internet was a thing, I wandered into my local newsagent in Springburn, a neighbourhood in Glasgow, Scotland, looking to see if John Byrne had resumed the art on The X-Men.  Byrne was my favourite comic book artist, and had been for a few years by then, from his work on The Avengers, Marvel Two-In-One, Marvel Team- Up, and a few other titles.  The X-Men was the jewel in the crown as far as I was concerned.  I didn’t know what happened to him after his last issue the previous year, and assumed he’d be back on the title.  So it was quite a surprise to see his distinctive style on the cover of The Fantastic Four, a comic I only read occasionally, and mostly in the black and white Marvel UK reprints.

Continue reading “COMIC BOOK REVIEW – FANTASTIC FOUR 232: “BACK TO THE BASICS!””