Alright, you beautiful and complete strangers, I’m going to try something a little different around here since I’ve been slacking in this department for quite a while now. Because I haven’t been reviewing movies lately — mostly due to a severe lack of free time — I thought I would start doing a monthly round-up of sorts where I give you my thoughts on the new horror films I watch each month. Although these won’t be in-depth reviews, hopefully this will act as a quick guide for your genre picks throughout the year.
The Aftermath – August 2020
SPUTNIK has been compared to any (and seemingly all) of your favorite sci-fi alien movies, so to say the bar has been set pretty high for this Russian thriller is an understatement. While it’s not nearly as good as Alien — which a lot of reviewers are unfairly comparing it to — it does stand on its own as an interesting mash-up of body-horror and sci-fi. It’s not exactly re-inventing the wheel here, but it’s a stunningly shot thriller with a cool concept at its core.
My only complaint with this one, and a reason why I didn’t completely love it like many others, is that there’s a weird (and forced) romance shoehorned into the plot that is not only unconvincing, but it strips away so much of what made Sputnik stand out in the first place. The whole idea of this disconnect between us and them and the mystery of what’s beyond our planet is reduced to a pretty boring love story of an afterthought. Outside of that, however, there’s some fun horror elements and I enjoyed the body-horror approach. Definitely worth checking out.
RANDOM ACTS OF VIOLENCE is… oh boy, where do I even start? Admittedly, I did buy into the hype and even featured it as a Cheap Thrills, but holy shit is this movie just all over the place. From the story to the weird unexplainable flashbacks and the paper-thin characters (especially its villain), Random Acts of Violence is a hot mess, and it might even be the longest 80-minute movie of all-time.
But because I can’t help myself and find the positive in everything, the one thing I did like is that it’s pretty much all practical effects, so some of the murder scenes were quite gnarly and gave me some Hannibal (the TV show) vibes. That’s… that’s pretty much it, though. With so much new horror content coming out every week, this is a hard pass. Sorry.
SHE DIES TOMORROW… well, let me take that back. This movie is the longest 80-minute movie of all-time. There’s a good chance the entire point of this movie went over my head, but when every other scene looks like fruity pebbles and meth — with virtually no substance — my cognitive abilities are reduced to open-mouth-staring at the screen, contemplating my life choices.
I see now why the film was marketed as horror — not because it’s scary or has any semblance of this genre we all love, but because now even movies as short as 85-minutes can feel like an eternity. Look, there’s an astonishing amount of people who enjoyed this movie somehow (every single one of them must be on drugs), but it was not for me. Not now. Not ever.
Movie of the Month – Sputnik