Wednesday, October 17, 2018

31 Days of Halloween 2018: 'Errementari' Is Devilish Fun

[Once again I'm going to attempt to do a horror(ish) movie review a day for the entire month of October. I've done this the last few years on The Cleveland Movie Blog. Most of the time I succeeded (usually with the help of a few other writers). Other times I didn't. We'll see if I can pull it off this year.] 

No, Paul Urkijo Alijo's ERREMENTARI isn’t a movie about Sherlock Holmes suffering with a speech impediment. Rather, it’s a Basque language dark fairytale about a blacksmith who gets killed in the war, makes a deal with the devil to come back and see his wife one last time, and predictably has the bargain go bad. But rather than pay the agreed upon price for this demonic con job, Paxti (Kandido Uranga) refuses to go to Hell. Instead, he captures the demon (name of Sartael, played by Eneko Sagardoy) sent to claim his soul, and imprisons it in a cage inside his old blacksmith forge. And to ensure that no one sets it free, he walls off his property and sets traps around it. If the villagers spread tall tales about him doing various evil misdeeds, like capturing and killing children, all the better to keep them away.

But the best laid plans, yada, yada. In the town near the blacksmith’s forge, there is a little girl named Usue (Uma Bracaglia). The local children taunt her because of her mother’s suicide, and one particularly nasty little boy tears the head off Usue’s doll and throws it over Paxti’s heavily fortified wall. When Usue ventures onto the blacksmith’s property to retrieve her toy, she also discovers a little boy locked in a cage. Knowing the stories about Paxti, Usue agrees to get the key to the cage and set the boy free. But things are not exactly as they seem.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

31 Days of Halloween 2018: 'Apostle' Is Intense And Intensely Thoughtful

[Once again I'm going to attempt to do a horror(ish) movie review a day for the entire month of October. I've done this the last few years on The Cleveland Movie Blog. Most of the time I succeeded (usually with the help of a few other writers). Other times I didn't. We'll see if I can pull it off this year.] 

Well that was intense. Gareth Evans, the guy who brought you the greatest two-hour fight scene in the history of cinema with THE RAID: REDEMPTION, has now written, directed, and edited an action/horror film that gives this year’s MANDY a run for its money as most insane movie of 2018. APOSTLE is sort of a riff on the WICKER MAN pagan cult horror motif, but from a very different angle both thematically and visually. There are also way more kick-ass fight scenes.



Badly damaged both inside and out, Thomas Richardson (Dan Stevens) is charged with infiltrating the religious cult that has kidnapped his sister Jennifer (Elen Rhys) and taken her to their island where she is being held for ransom. That will not be an easy task, as Prophet Malcolm Howe (Michael Sheen) and his lieutenants Quinn (Mark Lewis Jones) and Frank (Paul Higgins) know there is an intruder on their island, and are willing to go to great lengths to find him. At least Thomas gets some help from Jeremy (Bill Milner), a young cult member involved in forbidden romance with Quinn‘s daughter Ffion (Kristine Froseth). He also has an unexpected ally, at least to some degree, in Malcolm‘s daughter Andrea (Lucy Boynton).


Monday, October 15, 2018

31 Days Of Halloween 2018: Sometimes The Kids Can Drive 'Mom And Dad' A Little Crazy

[Once again I'm going to attempt to do a horror(ish) movie review a day for the entire month of October. I've done this the last few years on The Cleveland Movie Blog. Most of the time I succeeded (usually with the help of a few other writers). Other times I didn't. We'll see if I can pull it off this year.]

A black comedy in which parents are inexplicably overcome with the intense urge to kill their children is a premise that will likely be a deal breaker for many right off the bat. Me, I’ve seen enough movies where the shoe was on the other foot and kids were trying to off the adults that I figure turnabout is fair play. It’s not the idea, it’s the execution.



Well, after sitting through MOM AND DAD, I’m here to tell you the execution isn’t anything to write home about.