June 23, 2006

Delayed 2005 Horror

This last week I managed to see two 2005 horror titles. Calling them horror is a stretch as one is about as scary a tied up shoe lace while the other is actually a comedy. I'll start with the good one first.

The Devil's Rejects (2005, dir. Zombie) - This is a sick twisted little puppy of a film but boy is it enjoyable! The sequel to Zombie's equally sick House of 1000 Corpses is a completely different creature. After the first one I quickly made a mental note of Rob Zombie in my mind as someone to watch. He showed a great visual and aural flair and you could tell he knew horror movies and made a film he would want to see. It makes sense then the sequel is different because horror sequels that are all the same piss me off and I can imagine they piss Zombie off too.

I'll skip the plot as it is essentially pointless. It's very Natural Born Killers though, but it's much more thought out than that mess of a movie. What I really liked about this film is the incredible leap Zombie has made in terms of writing. If you actually listen to the dialogue on this film, it's sharp and smart. Three particularly enjoyably written scenes involve horny Star Wars robots, mechanical bulls and ice-cream and the scene involving the Gene Shalit-lookalike critic should have movie affectionados with smiles on their faces. Yes, it's full of expletives, but it's really quite well done. Also, the acting! Sid Haig is again wonderfully over-the-top as Captain Spalding, as is Bill Moseley as the too-serious Otis. But for me the real surprise was Sheri Moon-Zombie (Rob's wife). She plays the role of Baby as so hilarious zany that you can't help but fall for it. She's a hoot to watch. In 1000 Corpses the worst issue was the acting of the victims and side-platers, however this time, even that area is lifted as well.

Musically is where Zombie has the trump card. Who can forget that scene in 1000 Corpses set to Slim Whitman's "I Remember You"? This time we get some great music, noticably Lynard Skynard's "Freebird" providing the background to the fantastically played out ending. Speaking of the ending, it was really well done - the whole last 20 minutes or so. I'd like to see Zombie try something for action-oriented. He'd be good at it I think.

Overall though the film is grotesque and grisly, but if you're not squeamish and can get past it then you'll have a ball. Zombie really has stepped up his game and I actually anticipate his turn at the Halloween franchise, especially considering all the news that has leaked about it lately. The Devil's Rejects's was a great twisted ode to movies, really. B+

The Fog (2005, dir. Wainwright) - And then there is this. The Fog. Awful. Truly, truly awful. Not one single second of this movie is scary, but a whole of it is boring. Maybe it's because the movie is filled with inconsistencies and pathetic directing (i mean, this is woeful Mr Wainwright). The acting is lame and it's just so... ugh. This is barely even a movie, I think. It's just some unfortunate stuff happening to a few characters we barely know. And don't even get me started on Selma Blair's character. What the hell was she all about? D-

Fact: The director of The Fog is Rupert Wainwright who has no relation to the good Wainwright clan. He also directed Stigmata and... well, I hope you never have to watch that or The Fog in your life.

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