måndag 28 oktober 2019

The Huntress: Rune Of The Dead

If you hear the country name of Sweden, there is a chance you will think about these details:

# Ace Of Base debut album Happy Nation, is still considered to be one of the biggest selling pop albums of all time for a Swedish pop band.

# Robert Aschberg and Gert Fylking´s fantastic 90´s talkshow with nudist guests, drunk reporters and serious topics such as how soft is the bed of an RV ?

# Reality TV star Nalle Knutsson, who tried to adopt a 30 year old indian married man with kids, because he was wonderful and cute.

We should be proud over this in Sweden, and we are of course proud also that Sweden have done a lot more than i mention here. But a lot of people always think about vikings when they think about Sweden. I noticed that, especially in my travelling years to Scotland, when the Scottish people i visited dressed up like vikings because i am from Sweden. A true honor of course, but i could understand why. Vikings is a part of our history, between the year of 800 - 1500. It is important to know, vikings were from all over Scandinavia, and other parts of the world, and not only in Sweden. If you are interested in vikings, i suggest you visit Tanumshede in Sweden, where they have petroglyph writings from vikings in big stones. I have seen them myself, very interesting to see at close range. Vikings in films have been made in many different genres, and from different countries. One of the films that comes to my mind is the 1999 film known as The 13th Warrior, directed by John McTiernan. A huge box office flop back in 1999, but the film has become a bit of a cult film for different reasons. One of the reasons why i enjoy this film, is to see that the main character Ahmad ibn Fadlan ( played by Antonio Banderas ) is transformed from a court poet to an ambassador to the Volga Bulgars. Knowing that this is a character that actually existed, makes him more interesting. The 13th Warrior may not be the best viking film, but entertaining as a historical fiction action film. When i heard that there is a new viking film coming, made in Sweden earlier this year, i was very curious. Finally something different in the category of Swedish made films. Since i could not find the film on DVD, i rented it on my Tivo box instead. Is this one of the better Swedish films of this year, or is The Huntress: Rune Of The Dead a disaster from start to finish ?

811 AD, a family of three women, Runa ( Moa Enqvist Stefansdotter ), Magnhild ( Yohanna Idha ) and Bothild ( Viva Östervall Lyngbrant ), are isolated in their home, waiting for father Joar ( Peter Mörlin ), who has not returned since he left for a viking raid. One day, Runa finds the wounded viking soldier Torulf ( Andreas Tylander ), and bring him to their home. Magnhild is not pleased, since she don´t think they can trust him. It turns out that Torulf was in the same viking raid as Joar, but he is not sure what happened to him. Suddenly, Joar turns up and their lives can go back to normal. But there is something that Joar has not told his family, that he might have made a sin against the dead, that could destroy this family.

It is not often you see a film that wants to tell a story, during one period of the viking era. And this is something that makes The Huntress unique, since we don´t get to see these kinds of historical films made in Sweden. And i am very happy to see that film makers, are not doing the typical Swedish romantic comedies, that we are used to see in Sweden. You see, for some strange reason, Swedish people love to see Swedish romantic comedies, especially with bad acting. The Huntress: Rune Of The Dead is one of the few films this year, that breaks the traditional Swedish release with an interesting story, and interesting characters. Let´s talk about the characters, and wich ones i enjoy most. Main character Runa ( played by Swedish actress Moa Enqvist Stefansdotter ) is the strongest female character in this film, and the most interesting character. She may be a survivor, but you can tell she has a bleeding heart. Swedish actress Yohanna Idha as the character Magnhild, gives a performance that fits really well with her vulnerable character. Swedish actor Andreas Rylander plays the viking warrior character known as Torulf, a man who is carrying a lot of pain but has a good heart. There are a few more characters i could mention, but i would like to talk about the best part of this film. The final battle scenes is exactly what this film needed. Especially when Runa shoots with her bow, and you get a sense that this is a true warrior. My only problem with this film is that some of the more dramatic scenes feels a bit long. I would have liked some more violence instead. But maybe the idea was to make this film more dramatic. Director Rasmus Tirzitis have made a film that will be appreciated by people, who enjoy historical films. He have managed to capture the look, and the lifestyle of Scandinavian vikings in a positive way. If you are fed up with the typical Swedish film release, then The Huntress will make sure you choose the right path to quality. See and learn Colin Nutley, this is how you should make your future films.

Rating: DDD

fredag 25 oktober 2019

In December, Let´s Celebrate 15 Years Of Napoleon Dynamite

Cheers everyone!

Daniel here, yeah that fantastic Swedish movie review guy, and yes i am the biggest Jason Donovan fan ever. So of course i will be going to his 2020 Great Britain and Ireland tour, some of us swedes have very good taste ( ask Mona Sahlin, she will confirm this ).

Anyway, i just remembered that the cult classic independent film Napoleon Dynamite, has turned 15 years old. Wow, 15 years has passed since this film changed my life completely. So of course we have to celebrate this in December, by doing a 15 Years Anniversary Review of Napoleon Dynamite. Since the year is getting closer to an end soon, i have to figure out what reviews i will publish before New Years Eve, but this is one of them i am really sure about. New movie reviews will be coming in November, so stay tuned for that and i guarantee there will be some treats for everyone. Have a fantastic weekend, and rememeber, Jason Donovan Great Britain Tour 2020 is the best thing happening next year, anyone who says no are just afraid to admit that they love him.

Cheers from Daniel!

tisdag 22 oktober 2019

25 Years Anniversary Review Of Stargate

In the 90´s we had some really magical films from certain directors. I realize that there are many directors i could mention, but i have decided to pick out one director who managed to bring cinema magic to the big screen. I am especially thinking about director Roland Emmerich, a man most people probably remember for all of his disaster movies. But let´s go back in time, before he became the huge box office name. The first movie i saw from director Roland Emmerich was a science fiction action film, known as Moon 44. Released in 1990, this film tells the story of undercover agent Felix Stone ( played by legendary actor Michael Paré ) who is hired by Galacting Mining, to investigate the disappearance of two shuttles that went missing. Even if Moon 44 is not one of the better films of Roland´s films, i still think this is a cult classic, and Michael Paré is the highlight of this film. Just 2 years later, Roland would release his next film, known as Universal Soldier. This is a true science fiction action classic, with legendary action actors Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren. Universal soldier tells the story of Luc Deveraux ( Jean-Claude Van Damme ), a former U.S. Army soldier who was killed in the Vietnam War in 1969, returns to Life through a secret military program known as " Universal Soldier ". The idea is to control an army of soliders, to do anything that they are told, without having any emotions or regrets. Universal Soldier is a must see, as this is a really good action film. In 1994, Roland Emmerich released his biggest film so far in his career, known as Stargate. This film became a huge box office success worldwide, and now in 2019 it is 25 years ago since the film had it´s premiere. I started to remember how much i enjoyed this film as a teenager, and have not seen it for many years. So i decided to watch this film again, with this 25 Years Anniversary Review, to see if the film is still entertaining. Is this still a 90´s sci fi classic for everyone to enjoy, or has Stargate aged too much through time ?

Egyptologist and linguist Dr. Daniel Jackson ( James Spader ),  is invited by Catherine Langford ( Viveca Lindfors ) to translate Egyptian hieroglyphs on cover stones, that her father unearthed, in Giza, Egypt in 1928. Daniel is taken to the U.S. Air Force instilation, where he is told that this is classified imformation. David is asked to check translation for Egyptian hieroglyphs, and he manage to find the right words, where he especially see the word Stargate, that uses constellations as spatial coordinates. On this revelation David is shown that this base has this Stargate, tha Catherine´s father. They have onnly managed to find 6 markings on this Stargate, but not the seventh symbol. David manage to do so, and the Stargate opens up like a wormhole, connecting the Stargate with a distant planet. A team with leader Colonel Jonathan `Jack` O´Neil ( Kurt Russel ) and his soldiers, and Dr. Jackson all go on a mission to investigate this planet. 

It is strange how some films can age with dignity, and i have to say in the sci fi genre, Stargate may be one of the few sci fi films of the 90´s, that manage to do so and still feel like a great mix of action, adventure and science fiction. The Egypt mythology is especially one of the details in this film that fits so well with the storyline. Such details as the Egyptian hieroglyphs, the design of the Stargate itself, and the Egyptian masks, i enjoy it all for different reasons. But we have to talk about the characters for a while. James Spader as Dr. Daniel Jackson, is clearly a man who loves Egyptian history, and you can sense his passion in this character. Spader manage to balande his nerd personality, and also give him a more brave approach. Legendary actor Kurt Russel as the bad ass character Colonel Jonathan ´Jack´ O´Neil is one of the biggest highlights of this film. You could not ask for a better actor in this role. Legendary Swedish actress Viveca Lindfors is wonderful in the role as Catherine Langford. Erick Avari ( who most of you probably remember from the 1999 film The Mummy ) as Egyptian society leader Kasuf, is another really great choice for this cast. I have to mention actor Jaye Davidson, for his performance as Ra - The Egyptian Sun God ( here an Alien who have taken human form ). This is one of those performances you will not forget. One of the reasons why Stargate is such a good action adventure, is that this feels almost like Steven Spielberg might have influenced director Roland Emmerich when he made this film. Speaking of Roland, i have to mention i love his vision for this production. He clearly wanted to give us a different take on Egyptian mythology, and he finds a way to combine the Egyptian style with cool special effects. Even if this film is now 25 years old, i still feel that Stargate feels magical even today. Maybe it has something to do with the magical films of the 90´s, but i still feel that this is a film that can grow old with dignity, and still look good even today. Stargate is the perfect popcorn film for everyone to enjoy on DVD or Blu Ray, if you feel like watching a really entertaining 90´s adventure.

Rating: DDDD

torsdag 17 oktober 2019


Serial killers, we fear them and hate them, and still they make us fascinated. How can they become such monsters, and what made them so evil ? There are many reasons why of course, and we can´t find all the answers that easy. I have read some books about serial killers, especially since i was very curious about the case of serial killer John Wayne Gacy. If you have not heard about him, then let me explain some details. He is known as the " Killer Clown ", who murdered at least 33 teenage boys and young men between 1972 and 1978 in Cook County, Illinois. Gacy was well known in his community for being a hard worker, and helping young men to get jobs. When the truth started to come out, everyone got to see who Gacy really was, a sadistic serial killer. There are a lot of books to read about him, but if you are interested to know more, i suggest you read the book Killer Clown by author Peter T. Maiken. There is also a great TV mini series on DVD called To Catch A Killer, with legendary actor Brian Dennehy who gave a strong performance as John Wayne Gacy. When we think about serial killers in films, i have some really good titles to choose between. But if i had to pick one title, there is no doubt i would pick American Psycho from director Mary Harron. This is a very disturbing, but fascinating portrait of serial killer Patrick Bateman ( played brilliant by actor Christian Bale, who is a wealthy New York investment banker. American Psycho is not only a really well made psychological horror film, this film also show us many different angles of a serial killer´s sick mind. A must have in your DVD or Blu Ray collection. For quite some time, i have been very interested in a new serial killer film known as Artik, and loved the trailer. This film looked different from many other releases in this genre. I finally got a chance to see this film from Epic Pictures on VOD. Is this one of the better films in this genre for many years, or is Artik a big disappointment that you might as well skip ?

Artik ( Jerry G. Angelo ) is a serial killer, who make comic book drawings of himself killing people, while he murder innocent victims with young boy Adam ( Gavin White ) to assist him. While hard worker Holton takes a walk, he finds Adam doing grafitti near his working place. He begin a conversation with Adam, and notice he is extremely shy, but also get a sense that something is wrong with his behavior. When Holton sees drawings that Adam is carrying, of disturbing images, he contacts counselor Kar ( Matt Mercer ) that helps a group of people, including Holton. Kar see the disturbing drawings and decide to head out to the farm. Artik has not finished his drawings yet, and he will make sure that his story is told, in the right way of his mind.

I don´t know another way to explain this, but Artik is one of the few films this year that has really connected with me. Not that i see anything positive about the serial killer story, but this is a very powerful film for many different reasons. The portrait of a serial killer, drawing himself as a super hero, is not only really sickening but also show you his own view of himself. This is a very unique part of ths film where you see a serial killer portrait from a completely different angle than we have seen before. Since most serial killer films usually follow a certain pattern, Artik does the oppisite and for that i am very grateful. We have to talk about the characters for a while. Actor Jerry G. Angelo as serial killer Artik, gives a strong performance of a very distubed man. It must have been really hard, to capture the face expressions and mentality of a serial killer, and i have to say that Jerry does a really good job with all these details. Child actor Gavin White, as the young boy Adam, is another strong performance that you will remember. Actress Lauren Ashley Carter ( who some of you might remember from the independent sci fi horror film The Mind´s Eye ) really gives her character a personality you won´t forget, since she is really disturbing. The brutality of this film is needed, since it gives the story a much deeper meaning than the ordinary horror film. Artik is a film that build itself up, with great looking cinematography and a story that moves along in a stylish way. Director Tom Botchii Skowronski have made one of the best serial killer films since the South Korean film I Saw The Devil. He clearly wanted to tell a different story in this genre, and he manage to put all the pieces together in a clever way. Artik is a must see on Blu Ray from Epic Pictures, make sure you get your copy ( i will leave the link below ). One of the better horror releases of this year, Artik leaves a satisfying flavor of joy.

Rating: DDDD


Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark

There is a weekend every year, when people all over the world gets a visit by the door. I know what you´re thinking, can´t be Jehovahs Witnesses, since they visit every week. I am actually thinking about all the kids that go trick or treating, dressed up in different costumes, for the weekend known as Halloween. Even if this weekend is not as popular here in Sweden compared to America, you can tell that trick or treating is happening here also. We get to see horror films in cinema, and they dress up stores with pumpkins and spooky figures, pretty much as in America but in a smaller scale of course. Halloween is the horror weekend where it is tradition to bring out the horror classics, no matter what favourites you have. For me personally, i have a lot of titles to choose between. But i have decided to pick out one specific film, that is really appreciated by horror fans worldwide. I am of course thinking about the anthology horror film Trick ´r´ Treat from 2007. This is one of the best Halloween horror films you could find ( compared to modern horror films released within the last 10 years ) from director Michael Dougherty. Trick `r´ Treat manage to tell different horror stories in a very effective way, using the Halloween weekend as a theme through every story. The cast is really good as well, including wonderful performances from actors such as Brian Cox, Dylan Baker, Anna Paquin and many more. If you have not seen Trick ´r´ Treat, you need to get the Shout! Factory blu ray release, with some really nice special features included. If you hear the name Guillermo del Toro, you would probably think about his films Blade 2 and Pacific Rim. Both are really good films, but his gothic horror film The Devil´s Backbone, is a personal favourite of mine. He is one of the producers on a horror film called Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark, based on the children´s book series of the same name, from author Alvin Schwartz. Since im a big horror fan, of course i have to check out a film produced by a legend such as Guillermo del Toro. Is this a better horror film than i expected, or should this film have been buried underneath the pumpkins ?

in 1968, three teenage friends in a small Town of Mill Valley, Pennsylvania - Stella Nichols ( Zoe Margaret Colletti ), an amateur author obsessed with the horror genre, Auggie Hildrebrandt ( Gabriel Rush ) and Chuck Steinberg ( Austin Zajur ) - play a prank on bully Tommy Milner ( Austin Abrams ) on Halloween night. Tommy and his gang chanse them to a drive in thru Cinema, where Stella, Auggie and Chuck manage to hide inside the car of Ramón Morales ( Michael Garza ). Tommy swear he will revenge their prank, and leaves. The gang advice Ramón to follow them to a local " haunted house ", that belonged to the wealthy Bellows family, who helped found Mili Valley. Inside the house they find a book with horror stories written by Sarah Bellows ( Kathleen Pollard ). Tommy and his gang lock the whole gang inside the house, together with Chuck´s sister Ruth Steinberg ( Natalie Ganzhorn ). They manage to get out of the house, and Stella take the book with her. But Stella notice that new stories are being written in the book, with her friends being a part of each story. Sarah is still around, and unless Stella finds a way to stop these stories, everyone will die around her.

If you have been looking for an old school horror film, that tries to bring back old horror films instead of jump scares, then you should have a look at Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark. This is the kind of horror film that is meant to be seen on the weekend of Halloween, using classic horror ingredients and adding some extra details. So why is this a great choice for Halloween ? There are different reasons, but let´s tell you the most positive details on why this film works, The film takes place in the year of 1968, and it feels like they have managed to capture the time period well, including the costume design. It also feels like this film have tried to bring back horror films from the past, and Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark does not try to be modern ( and this is something i really appreciate ). The cast of young actors does a good job with their performances, so let´s get into the characters for a bit. Let´s begin with Young actress Zoe Margaret Colletti ( who was in the 2014 remake of Annie, the classic musical ) plays the character Stella Nichols. Right from the start when you meet Stella on screen, you can´t help to love her personality. Young actor Michael Garza, who plays the character Ramón Morales, is that kind of guy i think a lot of men will rezognize themselves in, when we were that age. One of the characters i feel fits really well in this gang is Auggie Hilderbrandt ( played by actor Gabriel Rush, who can be seen in several films of legendary director Wes Anderson´s films, such as Moonrise Kindom and The Grand Budapest Hotel ). Auggie is clearly a smart young man, and he brings something special to this group of friends. Now what about the horror elements in this film, do they work ? I would have to say yes, since it does feel creepy in certain scenes, and manage to make you feel interested in the story of Sarrah Bellows. There is especially one scene that is really creepy, with a very strange Mother looking creature in a hallway. Director André Ovredal ( who directed one of my facourite horror films in recent year called The Autopsy Of Jane Doe ) have made a horror film that will please fans of old school horror. A great choice for this Halloween weekend, if you want to have some fun while wearing your costume.

Rating: DDD

Make Sure You Check Out Screen Stars On YouTube

Cheers everyone!

I hope you are all good, and enjoying your week so far. Now, this will be a different post than my usual reviews. Since i love to hear different film critics on YouTube, i thought it would be a good idea to give you a good advice on who you should be checking out this month, especially since Halloween is coming up. The YouTube channel called Screen Stars, is a really good movie review channel, with reviews in different genres. One of the things i think makes this channel so good, is that the reviewer knows how to construct reviews in a simple, but effective way. If you enjoy horror films, action films, and even trailer reactions, you will find it all on Screen Stars, plus much more.

I will link his YouTube channel below, if you want to check out his videos, and i hope you enjoy his reviews, just like i do. More reviews are coming up on my blog, so keep your eyes open and i will see you soon.

Cheers from Daniel!


onsdag 9 oktober 2019


Through history we have always been fascinated by the unknown. No matter if it is stories about monsters, aliens, historical folk tales, there is a lot of mysteries out there that people will always be fascinated about. I thought we should talk about 2 mysteries that have been in news papers for many years, where 2 cases turned out to be hoax. Let´s begin with the 17 minute black-and-white film released in 1995. This video was supposed to show an Alien autopsy, that was made by the American military. At first a lot of Alien believers thought this was finally the biggest proof that the American government have been hiding evidence for many years. The 17 minute video turned out to be a hoax by London-based entrepeneur Ray Santilli. I have seen the video, and i have to say it is a well made hoax with so many details about the autopsy. I have since then Heard the film crew behind this hoaxc, tell their story how they managed to pull this through. Let´s travel back in time for our next hoax, back to the year of 1967. The Patterson-Grimlin film is a short motion picture that is supposed to show evidence of the hairy creature known as Bigfoot, beeing caught on camera up in a forest area of Northern California. A lot of experts have talked about this short motion picture for many years, where most experts agree that this was a hoax. But there are those who also believe that this is the best evidence that Bigfoot does exist. No matter how you turn things around, i think we should be aware that not everything we are told has to be true. I have seen several videos of conspiracy theorists, and there is a lot of crazy details that they manage to find. I mentioned Bigfoot earlier, and this beast have been a part of many films, in many different adaptations. I recently came across a new Bigfoot movie on VOD, simply called Hoax. The trailer looked like fun, but is this better than i expected, or should Hoax been cancelled from ever being made at all ?

A group of young people are murdered brutally in the woods. There is evidence that this might be the work of the beast, known as Bigfoot. TV network executive Roger Brannan ( Matt Riedy ) is confronted by John Singer ( Ben Prowder ), a TV host who has a new idea. He wants to make a reality TV show on the hunt for Bigfoot, by putting together a team of people who can make it possible. Roger agree to let John make the show, on one condition, he needs to find physical evidence that Bigfoot exists. John visits Dr. Ellen Freese ( Cheryl Texiera ), who is a primate specialist in animals. He needs her on his team, to find the evidence he needs to prove that Bigfoot exists. She eventually agrees, as she meets the rest of the team. But this expedition is not going to be what anyone expected.

If you love the stories of Bigfoot, and if you enjoy B horror movies, then Hoax will be the Christmas present you always wanted. This is a low budget horror film that makes sure that Bigfoot fans get a tasteful treat. Hoax is one of those films that you might recognize from different similar films, but the one thing that makes this Bigfoot story stand out is that this crew is making a reality TV show about the hunt for Bigfoot. Now, i will say this, the reality show itself does not look very good, but the film itself is entertaining for different reasons. First of all i like some of the characters in this film, since they are very different from each other. Let´s begin with actress Cheryl Texiera ( who some of you might have seen in TV comedy series It´s Always Sunny In Philladelphia ) as the character Dr. Ellen Freese. It becomes very clear that she might be the most intelligent person in this research team for the reality TV show. The second actor i think is great in this film is an actor, who was a part of a real Sylvester Stallone cult classic known as Cobra. Of course i am talking about Brian Thompson, who here plays bad ass character John Singer. You can tell that Brian must have had fun making this film, since he knows how to bring his cheesy dialogue in a certain way. If you are expecting a big slaughter feast, you won´t get it until the end of this film. But don´t worry, the best part of this film is actually the last 15 minutes. There is a twist into the story here, that reminded me of the 1986 classic cult film The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2. I won´t go into details, but i love the ending. The only thing i can complain about, is that there is a missed opportunity here, and not making the reality TV idea feel realistic. You see those scenes, where the camera crew films scenes for the TV show, they don´t feel portrayed as a reality show, more of a vlogging show instead. Other than that, Hoax is an entertaining B movie, especially for you who love mysterious legends and classic horror stories. Director Matt Allen have made a directorial debut film that may not bring anything fresh to the table, but clearly love horror of the 80´s, and this is something he captures well in this film.

Rating: DDD

tisdag 8 oktober 2019


We fear a lot of things as human beings. Some of us fear bacterias, diseases, or perhaps mental issues. It is easy sometimes to forget that there are more things to fear, especially if you are out in the wilderness. Just imagine if you are in Australia, where you have snakes, poison spiders, crocodiles, bull sharks and many more dangerous animals. Would you really walk everywhere without a flame thrower or a grenade launcher ? Exactly, we would wear them both ( just in case of course ). I am hoping to visit Australia in the future, there seems to be so much to see and experience in this country. Hopefully visit the grave of Michael Hutchence, lead singer of INXS, a band i have listened to for many years. Speaking of Australia, how many of you remember the really well made Australian horror film Rogue, released in 2007 ? In my opinion, one of the better crocodile horror films made, directed by Greg McLean ( who also directed the Australian horror films Wolf Creek and Wolf Creek 2, both worth checking out ). Rogue is inspired by the true story of Sweetheart, a giant male saltwater crocodile who attacked boats in the late 1970´s. One of the reasons why Rougue is so good, is that the special effects are very effective. The giant crocodile works really well, and i have to mention that the cast does a wonderful job as well. Alligators and crocodiles are included in many classic horror films, such as director Tobe Hooper´s 1977 film Eaten Alive, or the 1999 cult film known as Lake Placid. What if you were trapped in a building, during a tornado, while you have alligators attacking you ? Sounds like the perfect Thanksgiving weekend right ? This is the basic story of the horror film Crawl, a horror film that combines 2 classic horror elements. Is this a surprisingly effective horror film, or should Crawl have been thrown into the sea to be buried within the sand ?

A tornado is spreading across Florida, and Haley Keller ( Kaya Scodelario ) is worried about her father Dave Keller ( Barry Pepper ), if he is stuck inside his house. She decides to go out there in the Category 5  hurricane, even if the Florida State Police advice her to leave the area. She refuses to do so, and drive towards her father´s house. The house is in terrible shape, and she finds her father wounded underneath the crawl space of the house. But it becomes clear that Haley is not prepared for what is about to come, that alligators are surrounding the house, and the water levels are rising fast. Unless they find a way out, these beast will finish them off for good.

If you enjoyed the Australian horror film Rogue, then i guarantee you will have fun with Crawl. This is the kind of horror film that does not rely on any jump scares, but focus more about our fear of real animals and the damage they can do. In some ways you could say that Crawl is an old school horror film, since you can feel that there are influences here from classic crocodile / alligator films in the past. Let´s talk about what i enjoy most about Crawl. The alligators actually look better than i expected, for being CGI effects. As they move around the water across the house, they actually look more realistic than i expected. One example, when then attack and take a victim, they feed on the human body in a way that looks realistic, as if they would attack in real life. I am no alligator expert in any way, im just saying that they have managed to capture the animal instincts of an alligator that i have seen several times on TV. Another detail i think Crawl manage to do, is to show the horrible environment of the damage a tornado can do. There are several scenes where it feels like you get a glimpse of how a tornado function. We have to talk about the cast. There are basically 2 actors in this film, who is the main characters. Let´s begin with lead actress Kaya Scodelario ( known from The Maze Runner trilogy ), who plays the character Haley. You can tell right from the start that she is a survivor, and Kaya manage to capture that feeling in this film with a powerful performance. Actor Barry Pepper ( who can be seen in 2 of The Maze Runner sequels ) as Haleys father Dave, also gives a strong performance. As an alligator horror film, Crawl is without a doubt one of the better films in this genre since the 2007 horror film Rogue. Director Alexandre Aja ( who directed the really good 2006 remake of The Hills Have Eyes ) have made a very effective horror film with simple details. If you love horror films and alligators, then you have to see Crawl. This is a horror treat that you will have a good time with. Who would have thought we would have a quality film in this genre again ?

Rating: DDDD

måndag 7 oktober 2019

Rambo: Last Blood

There are some action icons that will live on forever, no matter how many years go by. Just look at the legendary actor Charles Bronson, who have made several classic action films such as Death Wish, Assassination, The Mechanic, Breakout and many more. Chuck Norris have also given us a lot of classics such as Lone Wolf McQuade, Missing In Action, Invasion USA, Delta Force, the list could go on forever. But the one action star who we should talk about now, is of course the legend known as Sylvester Stallone. His incredible movie career have been with us ever since Rocky in 1976, when he took the world by storm as the Philladelphia fighter Rocky Balboa. Rocky is one of the best boxing films if all time, and Stallone really gave a performance that worked so well with his character. The sequels were entertaining as well, but it was clear that it was the action films where Stallone fit in best. There are so many titles to talk about, but just think about titles such as Cobra, Tango & Cash, Cliffhanger, Demolition Man, The Specialist, Assassins and of course The Expendables franchise. But it was one film that started one of his most iconic characters ever, known as First Blood. Released in 1982 from director Ted Kotcheff, this film tells the story of Vietnam war veteran John Rambo. He gets arrested by small town sheriff Will Teasle ( played by legendary actor Brian Dennehy ), for being a drifter. John is innocent and treated like garbage, something they will soon regret. First Blood is a really good action film, with a realistic view on war veterans and their suffering. Of course we had more sequels with Rambo, and they have all been entertaining, perhaps i enjoy Rambo 4 the most of them. And when i heard Stallone would bring Rambo back again, i was excited. The trailer for Rambo: Las Blood looked interesting, so i had to see this film on the big screen. Is this one of the best Rambo films ever, or should Stallone have stopped with this legendary character many years ago ?

11 years have passed since John Rambo ( Sylvester Stallone ) came home to Bowie, Arizona after his war in Burma. He lives on his deceased father´s ranch, wich he manages with his old friend Maria Beltran ( Adriana Barraza ), and her granddaughter Gabriela ( Yvette Monreal ). Gabriela finds out that her female friend in Mexico, have managed to track down her real father. She wants to go to Mexico and confront him, on why he abandoned her. John disagree, and so does Maria, that she should not see him at all. Gabriela decides to go there anyway, and meet up her friend. She meet her father, who clearly don´t want nothing to do with her. Gabriela is hurt, and go with her friend to a nightclub. Here she is kidnapped by human trafficking criminal brothers Victor Martinez ( Òscar Jaenada ) and Hugo Martinez ( Sergio Peris-Mencheta ). John finds out that Gabriela is in Mexico, and travel there to bring her back home.

I know a lot of critics have been rough on this film, for many different reasons. So i can tell you right now, none of their reviews will affect my own personal opinion about this film. For me personally, Rambo: Last Blood is exactly what i needed to see on a big cinema screen. Stallone blowing up heads, killing people filled with rage and a very easy plot that you don´t need to care about. You see, a Rambo film is not supposed to be taken too serious. You just want to see John Rambo kill as many people as possible, this is the way we want him to be. If you don´t like violence, lots of bullets, flesh wounds, then this is not the film that will change your mind. I personally believe that Rambo should be shown in schools, so older kids can be taught why the 80´s made us more intelligent. Let´s get into the details i especially enjoy about this sequel. The brutality in this film is really rough, especially when Rambo visits a whore house with a hammer. Now that is how you make an entrance. And the ending, holy shit what a violence feast. Rambo butcher so many bodies that i want to hug everyone of joy in the cinema. The characters actually have some surprises, especially the actors Óscar Jaenada and Sergio Peris-Menchheta as the evil human trafficking, drug gangsters Victor Martinez and Hugo Martinez. Since they are portrayed as brothers, their conflicts become personal since John Rambo is hurting their business. I have to mention actress Adriana Barraza ( who i especially remember from Sam Raimis horror film Drag Me To Hell ) as the character Maria Beltran. You can tell that she is a very important part of John Rambo´s life on his farm. Sylvester Stallone does his performance the way only he can do, there is no other way to say it. The biggest problem i have with Rambo: Last Blood is that the dramatic scenes does not give much emotions. So the brutal action scenes is the reason you want to see this film. Director Adrian Grunberg ( who directed the Mel Gibson film Get The Gringo ) have made sure that Rambo fans will feel at home, who clearly focused on telling a brutal story. Not the best sequel of the Rambo franchise, but still an entertaining film for fans of this iconic character. Go see this film folks in cinema, a popcorn delight. Stallone still got it, and i have a feeling he will return in more action films.

Rating: DDD

torsdag 3 oktober 2019

Jacob´s Ladder

Original films is something i have always appreciated. Those films that dare to go into a completely different direction than the typical Hollywood release. There are some great films we could talk about, but let´s get into 2 titles that i especially remember. The 2014 film known as Frank, is directed by Lenny Abrahamson. This is a very odd, but wonderful film that tells the story of Jon Burroughs ( played by actor Domhnall Gleeson ), a young musician who joins the band The Soronprfbs with the unique lead singer known as Frank ( brillant played by actor Michael Fassbender ), a man who wears a giant paper-machié mask over his head. This is a crazy, funny and heart warming story of a band who go on an incredible journey, through the mind of Frank. Director Lenny Abrahamson have clearly worked hard to capture the right feeling of the story, inspired by fictional story of Frank Sidebottom, the comic persona of Chris Sievey. And i have to say, this is a very intelligent film, with a very powerful story to be told. A must see on DVD or Blu Ray. The next film i have in mind is actually turning 30 years old next year, but is still a very original film. The film i am thinking about is the 1990 movie known as Jacob´s Ladder. Directed by legendary director Adrian Lyne ( who directed the classic psychological thriller Fatal Attraction ), Jacob´s Ladder is a very original psychological horror film, that tells the story of Vietnam combat medic, Jacob Singer ( really well played by actor Tim Robbins ), who begin to hallicunate that he is being attacked by something mysterious. Jacob´s Ladder is a cult classic, and well worth a watch. I found out earlier this year that a remake was coming of this film. I was not really excited to see a remake of such a cult classic, but decided to give this film a chance. Is this remake better than expected, or should it be flushed down with the turds ?

After losing his brother in combat, surgeon Jacob Singer ( Michael Ealy ) returns home from Afghanistan. He continue his Medical career as a surgeon, but his Life is about to take a different turn. An odd war veteran confront Jacob, who tells him that his brother Isaac "Ike" Singer ( Jesse Williams ) is still alive.  The war veteran is pushed infront of a subway train by a mysterious person. almost as if he was supposed to be silenced. Jacob investigate the subway station and find a doorway, where he finds his brother still alive. But he has changed, and seems to be troubled by something. Jacob sees a pattern with war veterans, having a secret drug that is not completely safe. As he begin to dig deeper into the truth, his own life is at risk.

I don´t mind a remake of a classic film, if the remake add something different to the story, or surprise me with a clever twist. And this is something that this remake of Jacob´s Ladder is missing, there are nu surprises or a clever twist to be found. In some ways, you could say that this film is only trying to copy the content of the original film, but without the same passion that Jacob´s Ladder in 1990 have. So is there anything positive to say about this remake ? The only thing that i appreciate with this remake, is that this film talk about the war veterans of Afghanistan instead of in Vietnam. This is actually not a bad idea, considering you need a remake to be updated instead of using the same story as the original film. But this is where the positive ends about this remake. I have tried to find a reason why they needed to remake the 1990 film, and thought this was the best way to do it. Let´s get into the characters for a bit. Actor Michael Bealy ( who i recently reviewed in the thriller The Intruder ) is the lead character Jacob Singer. There are some scenes where he deliver some descent acting, but for a lead character he should have left a bigger impact than this. The best character of this film is actually Samantha Singer, played by actress Nicole Beharie ( who i especially remember from the really good sports drama film 42 ). She gives her character some depth, even if i wish she could have developed her character more. Actor Richie Costa as the character Louis is interesting, but only seen for a short while. The CGI effects are not very effective, when we see strange figures show up. The original film had some great practical make up effects, and that film is 30 years old soon. This remake would have needed a facelift. Director David M. Rosenthal ( who directed the well made crime drama A Single Shot ) have tried making another version of a classic. I am sure he had good intentions, but most of them are lost with some mediocre choices. I suggest you see the original film instead, and i guarantee you will enjoy that film more than this remake.

Rating: DD

The Mummy Rebirth

Ancient Egypt, filled with historical moments and iconic personalities. I have watched a lot of documentary programs about Egypt, and it is very fascinating to see how the people of Egypt managed to build the pyramids, make Egyptian hieroglyphs and the importance of respecting the dead. Just the details of how they buried the dead, is fascinating. But there is so much more that makes Egypt interesting from a historical perspective. Mummies in films have been around for a very long time in Hollywood. The most classic mummy film that i remember is of course the 1932 film known as The Mummy, but we have to mention the 1959 film also known as The Mummy with legendary actors such as Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee and Eddie Byrne. Since then we have a lot of mummy films in many different shapes, and i have decided to talk about the 1999 version of The Mummy, a film i still enjoy to this day. Directed by Stephen Sommers, this film is almost like an Indiana Jones film set in Egypt. Actor Brendan Fraser as the character Rick O´Connell, is a great match and i really enjoy actress Rachel Weisz as tough Egyptologist Evelyn Carnahan. The Mummy from 1999 is a fun action adventure, with the right kind of tone for a mummy film. The sequels were not bad either, i especially enjoyed The Mummy Returns. Earlier this summer i watched a trailer of a new B movie called The Mummy Rebirth. This film seemed to be a low budget feast with bad special effects, and a concept that looked like fun. Is this a future B movie classic, or should The Mummy Rebirth have been buried underneath the sand of Egypt ?

Noah ( Carter ) and Daniella ( Brittany Goodwin ) are treasure hunters who team up with Sager ( David E. Cazares ), where they discover a tomb and unintentionally awaken Sebek ( Shamel Hashish ). Noah and Danielle realize that this is bad, and must find a way to stop Sebek, while Sager and his team are looking for a hidden treasure. Sebek gives Daniella a stone that can resurrect and defeat the dead, except him. He gives it to her since he sees her as the love of his life, that he once lost. Daniella can use the stone to fight against the mummys and monsters that Sebek brings forward, but have to find another way to end the life of Sebek, before he ends the existence of the whole world.

I can accept that this film has an extreme low budget, and could have been a fun watch anyway. The biggest problem i have with The Mummy Rebirth is that the film has not a lot to be happy about, if you were hoping for an mummy action horror film. The special effects are really bad. In fact, it feels like they were made on an older computer from 1997, as if the special effects team wanted to keep it as cheap as possible. Just look at the opening sequences, that looks like clay animated Egyptian figures, they look awful for a film being released in 2019. And the mummy zombies ? Well, they look like they were made from a Halloween costume shop, where someone put together a costume from different clothes and a mask. But wait just one second, the best is yet to come. Remember the computer animated reptiles in Mortal Kombat movie in 1995 ? I enjoy that film, but the reptiles did not look good. In this film The Mummy Rebirth, they have a similar reptile, almost mixed with a demonic look that looks really bad. This could possibly be the worst looking monster i have seen for many years. The gun shootings are even fake, and they don´t even seem to be firing their weapons, and let cheap CGI gun fire do the job instead. There are plenty of characters here in this film, but not many of them make any impact at all. The only actor in this film that does deliver some kind of performance, is actress Brittany Goodwin who plays the character Daniella. Shes not a great actor ( at least not in this film ), but she gives the only performance that you will remember. The rest of the cast does not give any good impression. Directors Khu and Justin Price ( 2 directors to make this film, incredible ) are probably interested in Egypt, but they can´t give this mummy film any form of life. This is an awful mix of horror, action and special effects that you will laugh over instead of enjoying. Someone call Brendan Fraser, we need a 4th The Mummy film soon, so i can forget that i watched The Mummy Rebirth.

Rating: D