Thursday, 20 April 2017

Review: The Blob (1958)

Stars: Steve McQueen, Aneta Corsaut

Budget: $110,000

Directed By: Irvin Yeaworth

It creeps and leaps and glides and slides across the floor, be careful of the blob!

I had actually seen the 1988 version before this wonder. Traversing the pound shops as a youth I seen this on VHS in one and thought how bad can a 1958 version of a film that properly shit me up and gave me nightmares as a young child be?

Not bad at all, it's almost like watching a different film with the same premise to be honest.
its mostly in black and white but the version i had had the blob, once it had eaten once turn a red colour.
staring A reasonably young faced Steve McQueen in one of his first roles, though looking way older than a school teen as he was supposed to be.
Made on a small budget even for those times all actors were paid little and the effects were made very cheaply yet very practical and looked good for it's time.

These include the blob actually moving through stop motion and it pushing its way through some theatre doors, obviously done on a miniature set.

So McQueen (Steve, yes his character is called Steve) and his girlfriend (Jane) notice when a meteorite crashes into a nearby forest, an old man living near reaches it first only for the rock to split open and reveal a white glutenous gel like creature in it's centre. Poking it with a stick the blob quickly travels up the stick and engulfs the mans hand causing him terrible pain.
Steve and Jane find him crying out and when he shows them his hand they quickly take him to see the doctor. Doctor Hallen is a little flustered as he was about to leave for a conference but once he see's the thing his intrigue takes over.

The Doctor anesthetizes him then sends Steve and Jane to back to the site to see if there's anymore evidence etc. The blob is spreading rapidly so Hallen decides to amputate, unfortunately before he can the old man is totally consumed. His nurse is dissolved too and then Steve and Jane return to see the doctor being absorbed by the creature too.
Both heading to the sheriff  they get lieutenant Dave and Sergeant Burt go with them back to the doctors. Knowing the doctor was off on a conference and finding nothing Burt calls it a prank and gets the kids parents to pick them up.

The Blob has moved on and is clearly getting bigger and redder with every person it consumes adding their mass to it's own. It kills the town mechanic next and moves on again.
Steve and Jane have sneaked out to recruited a few friends to help them warn people of the danger when they are cornered by the blob after investigating his dads shop being open. The only place they can escape to is the freezer where it seems the intense cold is a perfect deterrent to the blob.

Meanwhile Steve's and Jane's friends have set off the towns air and fire alarms so as to get townsfolk's attention, where they promptly disbelieve everything the kids have to say. While this is happening the blob has entered the theatre and consumed many people, the survivors come screaming out of the building proving Steve right. The blob oozes out of the front doors too causing everyone else to flee, including Steve's younger brother Danny who along with Jane and his brother hide in a nearby diner.

The blob is now large enough to easily cover the whole diner, Steve has no plans when Dave patches his radio through to the diners phone. He tells them to enter the cellar as they are going to attempt to drop a live power line on the monster.
Bert shoots the wire once he thinks everyone is safe and it drops upon the blob. Although thousands of volts dance all over the thing it is unaffected by the electricity, which has started a fire in the diner.
Steve quickly grabs a Co2 extinguisher and puts the fire out, not before hitting the blob with it too and causing it to recoil. Steve coupled with the freezer incident finally realises that it's the cold the blob doesn't like.

It's not far from the end here so THN won't spoil no more for you. So whats my overall verdict of this film? For it's 59 year age and relatively low budget even for it's time this film sets up some good tension which i'll add is missing quite a bit from the 88 remake. This is done by the use of more of 'what you don't see' which really works in this film, the only let down is the ending (on both this and the new) THN awards the 1958 version of the blob a solid 3 stars out of 5.

Sunday, 16 April 2017

THN Top 5: Horror Anthologies

I may have mentioned before that I love anthology type horrors, any film that includes more than one story be it linked or just separate entities i can't get enough of them.
There are some bad ones, good ones and ones that make you go meh. But one thing i have noted is that i have yet to find one that is truly god awful.
So if you've never indulged or maybe looking for a gem you may not have seen check out my top 5:

5. Twilight Zone: The Movie
This one sticks in my head because i sure apart from maybe an old hammer Horror one was the first anthology to stick in my head. Featuring a multitude of stories from a boy with immense psychic powers to a man witnessing a gremlin demon tearing up the wings of the plane he travelling on. We even get 'do you want to see something really scary?' by Dan Ackroyd which truly did make young me shit my pants lol.
It is unfortunately dated and aged now, though this is still in my books a must see for any anthology fans.

4. The ABC's of death 2
Far superior to it's predecessor with some very chilling shorts, some twisted and funny also some are unusually thought provoking. The first one is certainly funny with the inept assassin. Then the one with the Russian roulette that looks like their being forced into it, they are but for entirely different reasons you might think. If you want a more modern take on anthologies this one will be right up your street.

3. Creepshow 2
The second in the three part series, i may be jaded because this one was the first I watched then the first one. To me though this one seems more horror than the first film which has a lot more comedy elements than this one. Old chief wooden head being one of my favorites the bad guys in this short really deserve the gory end they get.
Then there's the raft which is almost the blob it certainly acts and dissolves people just like the 1988 version of the film. Although I wasn't fan of the ending to that short a little undeserved, but the last one the hitchhiker is quite funny and the repeating thanks for the ride lady is something i can never forget even after he's mangled beyond recognition.

2. Trilogy Of Terror
From way back in 1975 this is almost my favorite for one reason and one reason alone, the little Zuni doll that screams like a little idiot and seems so stupid to be scared of or killed by. But when it's shooting little arrows at you or blow pipes it's so effectively terrifying.
A big influence over other media like games, in Diablo 2 the little Zuni are an effective enemy there too. The others are great to and even though I felt Twilight zone was aged, this has to but not so bad, don't get me wrong it's old but a fun film.

1. John Carpenters Body Bags
Possibly one of the best anthology films i've seen at least in my book, this is after all my list of favorites. Three very good stories book ended by some funny moments from John Carpenter himself as the morgue attendant introducing each segment.
From hair where a poor man obsessed by his looks and losing his hair goes in for some hair loss treatment that turns out not to be what it says on the pamphlet.
The Gas station is  a typical stalker, who is the killer? type story.
The best one being Mark Hamill who loses an eye then gets a replacement from a psychotic killer only to be slowly taken over by the replacement.

These may or may not be on your lists but i'm sure you'll agree these are by far some of the best anthology films available to watch. Please take my list and decide if you want to see any of them for yourself.

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Review: Beyond the Gates (2016)

Stars: Graham Skipper, Barbara Crampton

Budget: $300,000

Directed By: Jackson Stewart

Bab's is back!
That's right good old scream queen Barbara Crampton appears in this film, a homage to 80's video board game crazes.

It also, like a few movies of recent times has some heavily influences from that time period too. From the filming style to the colours and even effects.
This is a massive feat considering this was made on the incredibly small budget of £300,000. Almost in micro budget territory with such a low amount of funds.

This film is also decently acted and cut well too with some good but basic effects thrown in for good measure.
Lets get on with the film shall we.

The film shows us a happy family a mother and father with two kids playing around outside a newly opened video shop.
The kids are two brothers and they all seem pleased with the shop. as they all look on towards it as the film fades to black.

A number of years later around 20 the father has gone missing and their mother has been long dead. The two brothers (obviously now older) meet up at the store.
Apparently their father has gone missing before except this time it's been for a long time. Since it's been such a long time they are assuming the worst this time. The brothers are two very different people also, one a hard working serious type (Gordon) the other a laid back down and out (John).
Gordon lives out of town with his girlfriend Margot who is coming into town later on, he doesn't seem to enthused about coming to the town. He also seems terribly unimpressed by his brothers choices in life too. They check out his old video store and actually begin to get nostalgic as they begin to pack the videos away.

An old friend from their past shows up and is now the sheriff of the town, he gets nostalgic over a particular tape and the brothers let him take it. John starts talking about video board games as he finds them upon the shelf. near the end of the day they realise they can't get into the back room and think the key must be back at the house.

We meet Margot now and she seems to be properly in love with Gordon despite something happening between them a little while back. Gordon finds the back office key just before they go to bed.
The next day both the brothers enter their fathers backroom, which isn't what they were expecting but they do find a video board game they haven't seen before.
The put the tape in and we are treated to the opening narrative of the board game by none other than Bab's Crampton. A weird time lapse happens as they are watching the video and it's already time to pack up for home.

Back at their dad's old house they continue to play the game and learn that it's not an entirely up to scratch, in fact it's quite possibly demon possessed. They learn more about the game from some other near do wells, especially where their father bought it from.
Despite coming to the conclusion that their father has disappeared into the board game they try to leave it be but the game won't let them stop playing. So Margot, Gordon and John continue to play the game at the video's behest. There's really not that much left to say about the film, in fact we are near the end which you know i won't spoil.

That's the trouble with this film though, it builds up and builds up vey well in fact only to have the end of the film splurge it's load in the last 15 minutes, despite this the pacing is pretty decent and goes quite well from scene to scene. Not quite a 4 star but above a three star too so THN awards Beyond the gates 3 out of five stars but with a Heavy recommendation to watch.

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Review: Peelers (2016)

Stars: Wren Walker, Caz Odin Darko

Budget: Unknown, probably not much

Directed By: Seve Schelenz

My word it's not often we come along a big pile of steaming shit in the horror nation.
Even some of the worst b-movies are at least watching or forgivable because of their low budgets or inexperienced actors.

These often make for a certain charm that keeps the movie watchable to an extent. but when you get absurdly bad writing, laughable acting and not a single character to relate to there's just nothing to redeem this movie.
Not that there's  nothing that is redeemable here except for maybe the surprisingly original way the zombies are made.
But that is quickly spoiled by to many other irredeemable factors, which i'll get to.

This is almost a clone of zombie strippers too except that film had some spark and excuse me for being crude showed a lot more 'skin' which helps with the fellas you know.
I know this tries to have something to say about big powers and oil etc but it just doesn't work with the rubbish the rest of the film delivers.

So enough with the put downs lets get on with describing the dribble shall we?

right so we are treated to some random stranger in a bed who when a nurse enters goes bananas and attacks her.
Orderlies and doctors rush in to help only for the door to close and blood leak out from under it.

We then see the interior of the strip club this is the problem they try to set up to many things to make you care about the people like why does blue jeans have a police bike. A necklace with L M on it but none of it pans out to more than two dimensional stories to try and flesh out some stupid characters or trying to force you into trying to like them past irredeemable flaws.

The door man Remy played by Caz, clearly has a crush on Blue Jeans, the bar man fancies one or multiple members of the stripping club it was so cliched that I didn't care which. She is in the process of selling the club, in fact it's the last night of the club before it changes hands.
Blue Jean's for some reason has a police bike as her mode of transport, to which she is called outside to show someone. Though they have already taken upon themselves to have a go on her bike.
When she says about this the bike rider who is interested in buying the bike proceeds to, in a off handed way insult her (though why some of the things she states as a 'strike' are just childish or absurd) until he finally calls her BJ, probably because it's a play on blowjob. She  then proceeds to (as she was a baseball player too) smash in the boys nose and teeth with a baseball.
He tries to chase her but one of the Mexicans earlier let into the club knocks the boy off his feet, which she thanks him for.

Turns out these Mexicans think they found some oil in a mine earlier that night, though they say they are there to celebrate one of their birthdays. Each one of them has been infected by the oil that really is oil but has some odd strain in it that infects anyone that comes into contact with it.
So one by one the Mexicans succumb to the infection, all the while each of the strippers puts on their own 'authentic' show for the punters. Even these feel forced or even totally pointless, the new girl (on a night where the club is being sold?) is nervous to go on the stage. One as she's scared she'll do shit compared to the other girls and secondly her jealous boyfriend might be watching.

Two men and a stripper are slaughtered in a private dance area during this the woman with the bad nerves goes onto the stage. Her boyfriend just happens to be at the bar and yes flies out of control when she goes up on stage and takes her bra off.
They argue until out the back and then both of them are murdered by one of the oil infected guys, the barman who has followed them manages to escape by holding the attacking guy off. Gibbering and hands covered in oil he is discovered with the bodies at his feet.

The police come and they are after Blue Jeans son as he has stolen and joy rode in a police car. The female officer goes to see Logan (her son) then the infected kill her partner, another infected leaps through the back office where Logan (who is apparently a ladies man) is getting it on with the female officer. The infected guy smooshes the officers head with the desk but Logan manages to shoot him down. They evacuate the rest of the patrons from the bar.
They realise they can't kill these infected as they keep coming back alive, then they try shooting them in the head. Blue Jeans has gone into the back room to get the strippers, the one who's gimmick is being a baby on stage (she actually pisses on people too!) is killed. Picking up her old baseball bat she bashes the guys head in with it.

They seem to think the head shots/bashing has done the trick, they proceed, Logan, BJ, Remy, another stripper and a pregnant stripper too, to go find the barman. He has unfortunately been infected by the oil on his hands and kills the other stripper.
This is where the film takes it's turn to being zero stars, it just goes beyond stupid and does things so tastelessly from now on. They come to the conclusion that water and oil doesn't mix despite the body being mostly water (so how does it infect them in the first place?) Logan magically pulls this out of the air by suddenly telling them he went to college.
Then the power and the water are cut as the idiot who is buying the club has them turned off at exactly 12 midnight. Remy devises that beer is mostly water here, the barman comes back to life and the pregnant strippers water breaks on his face killing him.

Remy and BJ take bottles of beer out into the bar to take care of the rest of the infected guys, now all the way through this people are touching the oil or getting grabbed yet not being infect too. The pregnant stripper has the baby but is then tastelessly ripped apart almost exactly afterwards for no reason other than to shock?
I don't know i just didn't like it, it was uncalled for. Sorry but there;s one thing i dislike in films and that's things to do with babies getting hurt or in peril etc. Anyway BJ and Logan make it out with the baby after killing the rest and discovering the guy who bought the club knows about the oil and how it infects people too. He is actually infected too, BJ brains him before making it out.

I am spoiling the ending because the film is so abysmal, the boy from earlier is infected outside and is their last fight, for some idiotic reason after killing him they choose to set the club on fire by sending the police car on fire towards the club. There's some stupid joke that's lame about the name of the club and then they drive off with the BABY on a MOTORBIKE. Not that it matter because halfway down the road it seems Logan is infected to as the oil dribbles from his nose.
Then he just DROPS THE BABY ON THE ROAD, this is sick and distasteful and not needed AT ALL. This was the last straw that broke the camels back for me, this film may have scraped one star for it's original take on zombies with the weird oil if that hadn't happened.
So THN awards this sickening pile of crap the lowest of the low the dregs of Satan's bum hole zero out of five stars

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Review: Train to Busan (2016)

Stars: Yoo Gong, Yu-Mi Jung

Budget: 10 billion SKW, almost $9m

Directed By: Sang-Ho Yeon

Wow, what can I say?
Korea had gangnam style break out now we have a full on viral infected zombie outbreak film.
Will it or has it taken the world by storm like that of a sun-glassed blue suit wearing singer?

Only time will tell, but i will say here before the review i sure hope it does. This film is great it's got like 90% practical effects too which is refreshing to see in a film universe dominated by CGI.

You may be used to seeing ghosts or possession type films coming from the east, but a full blown 28 days later, though clearly inspired by world war z too zombie film?
It's pretty unheard of, even before the review ends i have to say this is a must watch film, a five out of five?
You'll have to keep reading on to see how it goes!

So we start the film with a farmer (i think) of some sorts driving through some kind of quarantined area, he has a bit of a moan when some men sanitize his little truck. Then as he's driving away his phone rings, while he's reaching for it he hits something in the road. Exiting his vehicle he see's it's a deer, although when he re-enters and drives off the dead animal reanimates with milky white eyes.

We then cut to an office where a clearly workaholic man, one Seok-Woo is busily working away. He's a funds manager (whatever one of those is its frowned upon)stuck on what to buy Soo-an his daughter for her birthday. He even asks one of his work colleagues.
Returning home that night with a nintendo Wii, we see Soo-an already has one from someone else (possibly her mother). We also realise Seok-woo is a single parent. He asks his daughter what she really wants for her birthday, apparently to go see her mother in Busan.

He's reluctant because of work but agrees to go with her to see her mother, despite saying she'd go on her own! He is then shown a video of her singing in class, but she stops though the class still applaud her efforts.
On the way to the train station it is clear something is going down, fires in buildings and emergency services rushing about, Seok-woo even nearly crashes due to them thundering about. Though they both make it to the train station event free.

On the train we are introduced to a pregnant woman (Seong-Kyeong) and her husband (Sang Hwa), a young baseball team ( two of which are focused on boyfriend and girlfriend, Yong-guk and Jin-Hee) and finally two old women, sisters In-Gil and Jon-Gil.
Just before the train is about to depart an injured girl barges onto the train unnoticed. She quickly becomes an infected zombie thingy (though they are more like 28 days later infected), she then infects a train stewardess, who in turn starts to chow down on some of the baseball players.

All our main heroes make it into the designated train compartments, although Seok does initially lock Seong and Sang out thinking they're doomed. Sang takes to calling Seok a douche for the rest of the film now. news reports on the TV tell of riots and people breaking out into violent rampage all over the country. The conductor tells the passengers over the radio that they have been asked to not stop until they arrive in Daejeon where they will be quarantined. Seong works out that the infected are only enraged/after them if they can see them and blocks the window with wet paper.

They also find a homeless man in the toilets, before they pull into Daejeon Seok gives a guy he knows a ring asking if he can get his daughter and him to safety. The homeless man hears conformation that they can be if they meet a contact at a designated point.
Daejeon station already looks ominous as they pull into it, deserted and empty. This isn't helped any further as the rest of the station is also empty. Seok takes his daughter a different way closely followed by the homeless guy (who overheard the call).

Both groups are headed off by the infected, lots more of the nameless passengers get killed here, a few including Sang manage to close a door long enough for some survivors to make it back to the train (Sang even waits for Seok to get through the door in a role reversal).
However making it back to the train the remnants are split up between the carriages, Soo-an, Seong, Jong-Gil and the homeless guy get caught in a carriage and just about manage to barricade themselves into a bathroom. Seok, Sang and Yong in another, Jin-Hee gets to the front cabin with a host of other nameless survivors and a CEO I shall from now on call Mr dick. I call him Mr Dick as from now on he is nothing but trouble and the main cause of death for a lot of people, especially some of the main cast.

The three men battle their way towards the 4 trapped people and in doing so find out that the infected cannot see very well in low light situations, such as going through the tunnels. They rescue their loved ones and nearly make it back to the safe carriage. Unfortunately at the behest of Mr Dick the rest of the passengers have blocked the door. Yong begins to break through as Seok and Sang desperately try to stop the infected coming through a door.
The first lump in throat happens here, i for some reason got really attached to Sang-Hwa and while holding the door closed he is bitten on the hand, i felt so bad that he will not get to see his unborn child come into the world, especially since they hadn't thought of a name for it yet.
Despite this Yong breaks through the first door and while Sang courageously hold back the hordes for as long as he can before turning, Seok and Yong manage to get into the safe carriage. Unfortunately and seen by her sister Jong-Gil is also caught and infected.

Mr Dick (after Seok gives him a couple of whacks) convinces the other passengers that the people who got back might be infected and should be quarantined to the storage area just forward of the safe carriage. In-Gil upset at the death of her sister opens the door and the safe carriage is flooded with the infected who seemingly kill everyone in there.
In the toilet Seok receives a phone call from some co-worker and this is a major misstep in the movie to me. An explanation, whether he's right or not I don't know it could just crazed ramblings of a mad-man. apparently their work plants caused the outbreak, that's it though nothing else is said on the matter, i just don't think that scene was needed.

The railway to the last Busan stop is unfortunately blocked by freight cars, the driver bravely suggests that he will run and get a new train on a different line. We also now get to see that Mr Dick along with the male train orderly, escaping from the toilet Mr Dick pushes the orderly into a group of infected so he can get away quicker.
The driver finds a new train and starts it moving, just as another train on fire comes thundering up the track knocking another train over onto Soo-an, Seok, Seong and the homeless guy under a train now on it's side. Yong and Jin on the other side see no way of helping so they continue on.
Making it into another compartment of another train Yong tries to open a jammed door to the other side where the train is, unfortunately Mr Dick comes along chased by infected and throws Jin onto them. She is bitten on the leg, Mr Dick escapes opening the jammed door leaving Yong with a Jin about to change. She does change and Yong just accepts this and lets her bite him too.

The other four trapped under carriage with straining windows full of infected inches from their faces look for a way out. Seok finds a hole under the tipped carriage but not before one of the windows breaks. It's now homeless guy, who has been a bit chicken up till now chance to be brave.
He holds a good bunch of them back while Seok clears some fallen rubble. Homeless man is then piled on by loads more infected as more windows break open. The other three make it out just as the compartment falls which would have crushed them.

Mr Dick is in trouble infected nibbling at his feet so the train driver leaps from the moving train to help him only to be thrown (once again) to the mouths of hungry crazies. Mr Dick makes it to the train and starts to increase it's speed.
The other three manage to get to the speeding train and get on not before a horde of infected manage to latch themselves onto the train and get dragged along like a giant carpet of the living dead. Seok manages to break their grip and they are seemingly free.
Checking the cabin Seok see's Mr Dick who bursts from the drivers room just on the verge of turning into an infected, it seems he was bitten in the earlier scuffle. He cries about meeting his mother before going full on infected.

Seok fights him off for a little while until he's knocked back a bit and Seong gets Dick's attention by hitting him. To save her and his daughter Seok wraps a chain around his middle grabs Dick from behind where the most terrible thing happens, Mr Dick makes one more dick move, he bites Seok on the hand as he flings him and himself over the side.
Getting to safety Seok places his daughter and Seong in the drive room, tells Seong how to slow it down when they see Busan insight, then much to mass amounts crying from Soo-an and my own eyeballs he says goodbye to his daughter.
Seok goes to back of the train and slowly changing into an infected brings the memory of his daughters birth to his mind as one last thought. I had the most massive lump in my throat and tears streaming from my eyes at this, i felt like such a baby but i know what he felt being a dad myself and kudos to this film and his acting skills to elicit such emotions from me. He then leaps from the back of the train with a smile on his face.

Now there's not much left to the film but you know i don't spoil endings here, what i will say is there's still a super intense scene to come and the song Soo-an wanted to sing for her dad comes into play and almost made me weep again.
All this and the film was sub titled too!
But coupled with absolutely fantastic acting by everyone even the little girl playing Soo-an I was able to get engrossed in the film and really feel how human everyone was too.
It's been a while since a film has made me have feels like this and Train to Busan is now in my top ten zombie/infected films and wholeheartedly deserves this 5 out of 5 by THN.

Thursday, 23 March 2017

Review: Critters 4 (1992)

Stars: Brad Dourif, Don Opper

Budget: Unknown

Directed By: Rupert Harvey

This is the fourth and last (thankfully) film in the critters series. It suffers from every franchise killer, no real new ideas, oh and the inevitable trip into spaaaaaaace that a lot of horror/comedy franchises seem to inevitably go.
This film is not really baaad per-say in fact it seems pretty standard run of the mill till Charlie destroys the ship midway, but that's for later.

Starting exactly where the last film ended we see charlie preparing to destroy the last two critter eggs. He is then called upon his galactic com by the bounty hunter boss.
He is apparently in violation of certain laws involved in destroying the last of a species kind. Ug appears and explains it better telling Charlie a pod is coming to collect the egg's.

Charlie isn't happy about it but agrees putting the small eggs into tin cans he sticks them into the cryogenic pod that crashes through the roof. He is to unfortunately frozen in the pod as it jettisons into space.

Later in the year of 2045 a space ship flying through space detects the pod, as a salvage ship the crew instantly think the pod may be worth some extra money. The captain is a dick (Rick), then the second in command Fran, is a very strong woman. Then there's the engineer Al Bert (Dourif), Bernie one of the ships hands and also Ethan the younger novice as such. Rick and Bernie bully Ethan quite a bit but the other two are more friendly to him.

When they realise the pod has an old marking on it of the intergalactic council, they contact the new federation who congratulate them on finding the pod and advise them to go to a nearby station to wait for them to pick up the pod, for decent compensation of course.
Rick is unhappy with this as he wanted more than what their offering but his choice to hold off for more money is other thrown by the other crew members. They reach the station but on exiting their ship realise the place is derelict and abandoned. Even the computer has seemingly gone senile.

The each discover things they're looking for such as showers with Bernie looking for the pharmacy, Al Bert also discovers the nuclear core is close to collapsing too. Fran goes for a shower where she is watched in silhouette by Rick, when he goes to give her a towel and possibly join her Fran clocks him a good right hook.
Embarrassed and realising the rest of the crew has seen what happened Rick storms off. The others just laugh it off as he storms away. He has other agendas however, taking his laser rifle to the pod chamber he burns a hole into it in an attempt to get to whats inside. Ethan catches him in the process but Rick knocks him out and hoists his unconscious body in the air.

However a puzzled thawed Charlie springs forth from the pod, seemingly unfazed by this Rick enters the pod expecting something more valuable to be inside. What he finds is freshly hatched little baby critters that proceed to leap in his mouth and bite his wrist.
All while this is happening Charlie trying to repair his super gun that has fallen apart. Finally once Rick drops dead, Charlie picks up his laser rifle and fries one of the critters hair off, possibly in an act to give the critters more character again like in the third part. Charlie gets Ethan down from the hook who quickly gets to like the crazy little man, especially when they hunt for the two little critters.

They both get trapped in the garbage disposal but escape before they are jettisoned into outer space, they are then let out of a vent by Bernie. The rest of them are a bit iffy over Charlies story even though Ethan confirms he didn't have anything to do with Ricks death and he has a driving licence from 1992.
Using a key card Ethan found in the lab coat of some scientist the crew discover the station was an experimental place for producing a terrifying killing machine out of beasts except it made them unable to reproduce. One of the Critters is watching this from the vent.

Bernie takes the card and lets himself into the pharmacy where he proceeds to fill a backpack with assorted drugs. Al notices that two life forms are making their way towards his position. He tries to warn him but they innevitably here his screams and we see him attacked by the two (now larger) fur balls.

This is where the film takes a drastic downturn for me they try to escape Charlie kills one of the critters but destroys the salvage ship in the meantime, then Ethan turns into a spoiled brat and we get a plot where the last critter uses the machine that enhances ferociousness on his kids.

Ug or he's known now as Tetra comes to the ship and kills Al after tries to stand up to him, this alienates Charlie. Especially when Tetra threatens the life of the others for the location of the remaining eggs. Ethan has however stormed off with an antique colt 44. to stop the other critter, this is where he see's it using the machine.

Ethan kills the bald headed critter with a liquid nitrogen pipe. The rest of the film is terribly uneventful now until Charlie is forced to kill Tetra in a who can pull the trigger quicker stand off, obviously Tetra has gone rusty there.
So i won't spoil any more not that there's much left to tell from here on out.
I'm not a massive fan of this last chapter in this franchise but it's better than some films of the genre and is worth watching just to finish the quadrilogy off.
THN awards Critters Four, 2 stars out of 5.

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

THN Top 5: Zombie Films

Zombie flicks are one of my favourite genres, probably many peoples on how saturated the market has been since the remake of dawn of the dead and the land of the dead saw them come back hard.
I have however been interested in this genre since i was a wee lad.
The have scared me and entertained me for many years, i think the reason being out of any type of horror thing happening zombies seem the most plausible. Still far off from ever happening but still up there. Why?
Because they're here already in the ground all it take is a virus, some weird new chemical or even a type of radiation we've never encountered and bam, all those we lost come back to eat us!
Here though is a list of my favorite of these films. It's a hard list to put together because just five out of all the offerings of which a large bunch are very good offerings too is hard to whittle down, but here's my choices and they're just my choices, i'm sure yours would be different...

5. Zombi 2
Originally banned in the UK i managed to watch a bootleg version at my friends house, it does not disappoint. Everything from truly gory feasting to a zombie fighting with a shark over who gets to eat the girl!
A very good introduction to the zombie genre, it will either draw you in or scare you off.
                                                                                                                                                                 4. Zombieland
A comedy take on the genre which was big for a while mid 2000's When the zombie outbreak happens a weedy kid who makes some rules for surviving the holocaust manages to survive by sticking to his ruleset.
H begins to find that some rules can be broken for the best results. Well written and acted with a brilliant cameo from Bill Murray that will make anyone's day.

3. Dawn of the Dead Remake
Why the remake and not the original?
Simple it's much the same story with a lot more added on, more death, scarier zombies and extended living in the mall. Acting wise just as on par with the original too.
Also features faster zombie that the old 80's films too, which are also more of a threat whether you like them or hate them in zombie films.

2. Shaun of the Dead
Another comedy take of the zombie horror, except this lovely offering is twice as funny as zombieland and britis made. Meaning inventive way's to kill zombies other than guns etc.
when everything from vinyl lp's are used it's just a funny romp, especially when the main star is cult british TV legend Simon Pegg.
Also despite it being a comedy there are some truly heartfelt moments in the film along with some gore filled scenes too.

1. Return of the Living Dead
Ok this is my top of my zombie film list it's another tongue in cheek comedy horror but done very well in that the horror can at times be quite scary and the seriousness is not eclipsed by the absurd ever. Introducing us to totally invincible zombies not even brain destruction can these ones as every part of them is alive.
only true way to kill these monstrosities is total annihilation by fire, only problem is that send the zombie virus up into the atmosphere as smoke. when it rains next it infects whoever it touches then.
Another early watch for me maybe thats why i'm so biased to it perhaps?

So that's my top 5 zombie films whats yours?