Saturday, August 19, 2017

The Overlook Hour Guest Profile: David Stieve (Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Venon)



When was the last time you watched Behind the Mask? It was years before I re-watched it, and in that time I had grown a lot as a conscious person and well rounded horror fan. I had forgotten just how genius the script was. So when it was confirmed that the writer behind the man wearing the mask was coming on The Overlook Hour, I was ecstatic. But after a series of unfortunate events, henceforth dubbed The Nilo Curse, the interview portion of the episode was lost. But now, after a brief healing period, David is back for round two!




In this interview we get to know David, how he became a writer, the steps that lead to BTM, but the guys also talk about the lasting effects BTM, the terminology it created, and how that adds credibility to a genre so many people are quick to dismiss.




-Huntress

Friday, August 18, 2017

Screenings in the Bay (Friday to Sunday): Dave Made A Maze, Paternal House, Good Time


It's the weekend! I hope you guys are looking for stuff too do because I definitely have recommendations. First off, Dave Made A Maze comes to VOD and select theatres today, and San Francisco happens to house on of those select theatres... It's our very own Roxie Theatre! You can get more of a feeling for this weird little adventure film by checking out our review here. Good Time is also opening today and will be screening all weekend at the Alamo Drafthouse. This one is more of an urban fantasy crime movie, but it's absolutely worth checking out. And of course, the found footage film I've been waiting for for weeks, The Monster Project, is released on VOD today.
And there's more!


Opening Today


Limited Theatres / VOD Friday 18th (1hr 20min)
Adventure/ Comedy/ Horror (IMDB)
Dave, an artist who has yet to complete anything significant in his career, builds a fort in his living room out of pure frustration, only to wind up trapped by the fantastical pitfalls, booby traps, and critters of his own creation. Ignoring his warnings, Dave's girlfriend Annie leads a band of oddball explorers on a rescue mission. Once inside, they find themselves trapped in an ever-changing supernatural world, threatened by booby traps and pursued by a bloodthirsty Minotaur.




Limited Theatres/ VOD Friday 18th (1hr 35min)
Action/ Horror (IMDB)
In a chilling and inventive take on the classic monster movie genre, THE MONSTER PROJECT follows a group of aspiring horror filmmakers, eager to raise their YouTube subscriber count, who post an online casting call for "real life" monsters to interview for their documentary. They find three participants and choose to film them sharing their haunted experiences in a mansion in the woods on the night of a lunar eclipse. The production suddenly turns into a nightmare when the participants transform into a real vampire, demon, and skinwalker (a type of harmful witch, according to Navajo legends, that can transform into any animal with the intent of harming people), forcing the unsuspecting crew to fight for their lives.




Screening all Weekend (1hr 40min)
Crime/ Drama (IMDB)
After a botched bank robbery lands his younger brother in prison, Constantine Nikas (Robert Pattinson) embarks on a twisted odyssey through New York City's underworld in an increasingly desperate-and dangerous-attempt to get his brother out of jail. Over the course of one adrenalized night, Constantine finds himself on a mad descent into violence and mayhem as he races against the clock to save his brother and himself, knowing their lives hang in the balance.



Double Hitchcock

Rebecca (1940)
Sunday 20th @ 7pm (2hr 10min)
Drama/ Noir/ Mystery (IMDB)
"Story of a young woman who marries a fascinating widower only to find out that she must live in the shadow of his former wife, Rebecca, who died mysteriously several years earlier. The young wife must come to grips with the terrible secret of her handsome, cold husband, Max De Winter (Laurence Olivier). She must also deal with the jealous, obsessed Mrs. Danvers (Judith Anderson), the housekeeper, who will not accept her as the mistress of the house."

-with-


Marnie (1964)
Sunday 20th @ 4:30pm & 9:20 (2hrs 10min)
Crime/ Drama/ Mystery (IMDB)
"Mark marries Marnie although she is a habitual thief and has serious psychological problems, and tries to help her confront and resolve them."



Midnight Madness

Friday 18th & Saturday 19th @ 11:55pm (1hr 21min)
Comedy/ Horror (IMDB)
The third in director Sam Raimi's stylish, comic book-like horror trilogy that began with The Evil Dead (1982), this tongue-in-cheek sequel offers equal parts sword-and-sorcery-style action, gore, and comedy. Bruce Campbell returns as the one-armed Ash, now a supermarket employee ("Shop Smart...Shop S-Mart") who is transported by the powers of a mysterious book back in time with his Oldsmobile '88 to the 14th century medieval era. Armed only with a shotgun, his high school chemistry textbook, and a chainsaw that mounts where his missing appendage once resided, the square-jawed, brutally competent Ash quickly establishes himself as a besieged kingdom's best hope against an "army of darkness" currently plaguing the land.




Night of the Living Dead (1968)
Friday 18th @ 10:30pm (1hr 36min)
Horror (IMDB)
There is panic throughout the nation as the dead suddenly come back to life. The film follows a group of characters who barricade themselves in an old farmhouse in an attempt to remain safe from these flesh eating monsters.




Sunday 20th @ 4:15pm (1hr 37min)
Drama (IMDB)
Eighty years ago, for some moral issues, a man, together with his own son, kills his own daughter and buries her at the basement of their house. This hidden grave is simply tied to the next generations of the whole family and turns to be a restraining factor.


-Huntress

The Overlook Theatre Reviews: Dave Made A Maze

5 of  5 viewers "Liked" "Dave Made A Maze" (2017, USA)
Here's what the creatures had to say:

The Berkeley Blazer - "Dave Made a Maze is an inventive delight almost from beginning to end. There is beauty for the eye and the mind in the chambers of the titular cardboard and paper maze that magnify rather than distract from the hilarity. There is a documentarian element used for meta-narrative comment that is genuinely interesting, and with the exception of Dave himself the performances were pitch perfect. There are a few moments where the film attempts to be emotionally resonant or profound that struck me with immediate and profound --albeit very temporary-- boredom that was paradoxically jarring. In this case though, who cares? This movie is rad." - 4 Stars

Trash - "Extremely inventive, sweet and crafty, while managing to not be at all precious. It's a science fiction set, constructed purposefully and intricately, and it's used to tell the story, really well. The filmmakers are comfortable making very dumb jokes, that are sometimes super funny, and sometimes made me roll my eyes, but didn't turn me off. The movie's biggest weakness is at times it feels like an extended YouTube video. But when it goes into real shit, like avoiding actual life issues and making literally anything just to not feel like nothing, it stops seeming like a clever video, and becomes a real story." - 4 Stars

Math Mage - "Excellently tragic/cathartic horror comedy." - 4.5 Stars

Lord Battle - "When a film is based on or marketed as a gimmick, you always hope that they can either sustain the gimmick throughout the film or manage to sneak in/deceive you with an emotional story. Dave Made a Maze is an adult drama, disguised as a fantasy/adventure film, disguised as a rom-com, and amazingly succeeds on all levels. The pace may betray you in the beginning as it seems they are buying time rather than developing characters until they enter the labyrinth, but damn does it deliver once they get in! I don't think I've been visually stunned like I was watching Dave Made A Maze since... you know I really can't compare this film to anything else. The look/vibe is untethered indie film, yet the set design will have you asking; How much was the budget? And How long did these sets take to build?! Dave Made a Maze is a must see!" - 4.5 Stars

Huntress - "Intricate details and jaw-dropping set design are the backdrop to the nonstop adventure story within Dave Made A Maze, and they alone warrant a second and third viewing, just to get a taste of how much work went into them. The fantastical element of this movie, which drenches everything within the cardboard world, tempts you to forget your adult life and beckons you to take every blind turn and hopeful leap with the adventuring party. Fantasy runs wild in this labyrinth, but the characters handle their hurdles rationally and realistically, so you never lose sight of them as real people. But no, that didn’t detract from how much I enjoyed the original and thematically appropriate ways in which the party members fell to the maze's traps and insane monsters. Dave Made A Maze is unlike any movie I’ve seen, and it’s not likely to be replicated any time soon." - 4 Stars



The Overlook Theatre Final Rating*
(Below is for after you've seen the film)

I'm sure some people thought of Dave Made A Maze as a poignant emotional exploration of gender, culture, and the modern struggle to create something worthwhile, and I truly think they are right. But what I saw as I watched everything unfold was the need to escape reality by creating an elaborate fantasy. Thing is this emotional ride also turned out to be a kickass fantasy film, so I thought Math Mage and I should put it to our test and see if this undercover fantasy film was also hiding the Secret of Cinema Steel!
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The Secret of Cinema Steel

A fantastical beast must make an appearance, be it help or hindrance
(Monster)
Lord Battle - "John "Minotaur" Morrison" - (1pt)
Math Mage - "Cardboard golems aka Origami" - (1pt)

The World must contain more than just one story
(Non Epic)
Math Mage - "Do something cool (actually never finish anything so you can say you never fail) vs rescue your boyfriend (though not from what you think)" - (1pt)
Lord Battle - "Pick your plotline. Depending on which narrative you follow this film is about all sorts of things..." - (1pt)

Multiple protagonists are needed for a proper adventure
(Characters/Adventuring Party)
Lord Battle - "Not the most inspiring adventuring party but they come together when they have to." - (1pt)
Math Mage - "The core adventuring party (girlfriend boyfriend his other friend the film crew) other characters only exist to pad the body count (see violence below)" - (1pt)

With fantasy risk there better be fantasy reward
(Treasure/Magic Items)
Lord Battle - "Not a cardboard coin in the house." - (0pts)
Math Mage - "There is no treasure at the center of the maze (until they make it); the real treasure is maturity" - (0pts)

Class and Racial tension is great for storytelling, adapt it to fantasy
(Classes/Multiple Races)
Lord Battle - "Dave Made a Maze had a cleric, a couple fighters, and filmmakers." - (1pt)
Math Mage - "Filmmaker and his crew are filmmakers and his crew, the rest of the cast is millennial and loser." - (1pt)

Solutions and obstacles must sometimes surpass realities limits
(Spells/Curses)
Lord Battle - "Curse of the cardboard fist? Brutal." - (1pt)
Math Mage - "Why did all this happen? It's not important and an explanation would make it less magical." - (1pt)

True adventurers are greedy beyond reason
(Dungeons/Traps)
Math Mage - "Is more properly called a labyrinth." - (1pt)
Lord Battle - "Is it first degree murder when your booby traps kill your friends?" - (1pt)

Heroes and beasts must look good fighting and dying
(Choreography/Violence)
Math Mage - "Quite a few deaths but they are the themed killed of a slashers rather than violent battle deaths." - (1/2pt)
Lord Battle - "This party was full of lovers, not fighters but on the up side, they died beautiful deaths." - (1pt)

Misogyny isn't for children
(Adult Themes/Nudity)
Math Mage - "The childish pandering routinely found in S&S is replaced by a serious adult relationship (expect for a couple of traps no one falls for)" - (1pt)
Lord Battle - "I think the dungeon is nude at one point..." - (1/2pt)

Characters should look of the land and vise versa
(Costumes/Setting)
Math Mage - "Amazing set designs and period appropriate costumes." - (1pt)
Lord Battle - "They literally have cardboard clothes at one point!" - (1pt)

With a total of 17 out of 20 points, Dave Made A Maze is concluded to be 85% Sword and Sorcery. In my book that's good enough for a stamp of Cinema Steel approval!


- Lord Battle

The Overlook Theatre materialized in a residence for a screening on 8/14/2017
*Based on the star ratings turned in by character reviewers, others viewed and got to "Dislike" or "Like" but that does not affect the rating.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

The Secret of Cinema Steel aka Sword & Sorcery 17'


Back in March of 2016 the New Mission Alamo Drafthouse in San Francisco held what they called Cinemapocolypse. This event was a 5 mystery movie marathon, each film being selected by a programmer from a different Alamo. All films were in 35mm and presented as a kind of oddity film with no restriction other that it was a sight to be seen. The films shown (in order) were Carnival Magic, Conquest, The Ying and Yang of Dr No, Lady Terminator, and Boarding House. After the screening I couldn't have been more excited to talk about one of my all time favorite films Conquest with other genre film fanatics and friends I made frequenting the Alamo. Everyone's reaction seemed to be one of surprise after being met with a very stylized vision of a nightmarish fantasy landscape. And it wasn't because they were unfamiliar with the director Lucio Fulci or his approach, but simply because there was a fantasy film other than Conan the Barbarian that had some cinematic value. I was slightly offended by the reactions of most, as fantasy has long been a loved genre of mine, but I'll be the first to admit that finding anything more than a Conan money grab is hard to do. It's not like the horror genre which has had many throw their hat in to try making a quick buck for little money. Fantasy films cost A LOT to do right, I mean how much does a fucking horse cost to rent for a day?!

I can't help but find it hypocritical how many "film" fans turn their nose to an entire genre. I mean Conan the Barbarian is a slow paced action film set in a desert that managed to capture people's imagination in such a way that it's still a household name. Was that because of Arnold? Or the character license? Or maybe because the film visually plays like a Western? How come there hasn't been another fantasy film considered great until the Lord of the Rings trilogy? And why does a genre referred to as Fantasy have the most strict parameters?

There are so many questions a cinema adventurer may have about the Fantasy genre, so instead of trying to answer them all, I've enlisted the Overlook wizard, Math Mage to help me create a version of the Vow of Chastity for Fantasy... The Vow of Iron Chastity! And instead of having film makers follow the rules while making a film, we will take our 10 commandments and apply them to existing films, thus weeding out fairy tales, family friendly adventures, and false fantasy across the board.
Join us if you dare, as Lord Battle and Math Mage brave the hordes of Conan cash grabs, best the waves of brutal CGI behemoths, and transverse the cinema landscape in search of lost fantasy films which have tapped into the Secret of Cinema Steel!
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The Secret of Cinema Steel

(Monster) : A fantastical beast must make an appearance, be it help or hindrance

(Non Epic) : The World must contain more than just one story

(Characters/Adventuring Party) : Multiple protagonists are needed for a proper adventure

(Treasure/Magic Items) : With fantasy risk there better be fantasy reward

(Classes/Multiple Races) : Class and Racial tension is great for storytelling, adapt it to fantasy

(Spells/Curses) : Solutions and obstacles must sometimes surpass realities limits

(Dungeons/Traps) : True adventurers are greedy beyond reason

(Choreography/Violence) : Heroes and beasts must look good fighting and dying

(Adult Themes/Nudity) Misogyny isn't for children

(Costumes/Setting) : Characters should look of the land and vise versa
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-Lord Battle

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Bluray Tuesday: Featuring Alien Covenant, The Scarehouse and Bluebeard

August 15th 2017


Bluray Tuesday is back once more. This week is light but features new, old, and TV seasons to catch up on before the Fall TV season. First up is my number one pickup today Alien Covenant, the second film in the Alien prequel series. If you are a fan of Prometheus you will enjoy this one for sure. Best Buy will carry an exclusive steelbook of this film. Target will also have a retailer exclusive for Alien in a digi-book packaging with special bonus content. On the indie side is The Scarehouse which looks promising. I may check this out later in the week. This week we also get a re release of classic Stephen King film, Pet Semetary for a low price and 90's clown comedy, Shakes The Clown, starring Bobcat Goldthwait. TV seasons released today are Riverdale, the classic Archie comic book series comes to life with a murder mystery twist, Once Upon A Time season 6, the Disney series with many twists and turns and DC's Legends of Tomorrow the complete second season which ups the ante of its first season. So good time to catch up before new seasons air this fall. So what will you buy, rent or skip this week? Let us know in the comments. Next week is huge so stay tuned! There will be lots of cool steelbooks and releases I've been looking forward to. Until next week!

Alien Covenant: Amazon - $19.99
4K: Amazon - $26.99

Bound for a remote planet on the far side of the galaxy, members (Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup) of the colony ship Covenant discover what they think to be an uncharted paradise. While there, they meet David (Michael Fassbender), the synthetic survivor of the doomed Prometheus expedition. The mysterious world soon turns dark and dangerous when a hostile alien life-form forces the crew into a deadly fight for survival.

Alien: Covenant (Blu-ray) 

Alien: Covenant 4K (Blu-ray) 

Steelbook: Best Buy - $26.99

Alien: Covenant 4K (Blu-ray) 

Digibook: Target - $19.99

Alien: Covenant (Blu-ray)
Temporary cover art 

The Scarehouse: Amazon - $17.99

When two friends open a Halloween fun house on Devil's Night it is all fun and games until their former sorority sisters begin to arrive. These six sisters are confronted by their past as the night spins out of control.
 
The Scarehouse (Blu-ray) 

Bluebeard: Amazon - $21.00

Dr. Seung-hoon sedates his landlord before medical check-up, when the old man begins telling him a convincing murder confession.

Bluebeard (Blu-ray) 

Once Upon A Time In Venice: Amazon - $15.99

Steve Ford is a private detective in Venice Beach, Calif., who's good with the ladies, bad with the punches and wild about his dog Buddy. When local thugs steal Buddy, Ford turns to Spyder, their devious leader, and forges an unlikely alliance. With help from his best friend, Steve pulls out the big guns to retrieve Spyder's stolen cash and cocaine and save Buddy.

Once Upon a Time in Venice (Blu-ray) 

Shakes The Clown: Amazon - $8.99

The all-clown town of Palukaville provides a colorful backdrop for this tale of an alcoholic funnyman framed for murder.

Shakes the Clown (Blu-ray) 

Everything, Everything: Amazon - $22.99

Maddy (Amandla Stenberg) is a smart, curious and imaginative 18-year-old who is unable to leave the protection of the hermetically-sealed environment within her house because of an illness. Olly (Nick Robinson) is the boy next door who won't let that stop them from being together. Gazing through windows and talking only through texts, Maddy and Olly form a deep bond that leads them to risk everything to be together, even if it means losing everything.

Everything, Everything (Blu-ray) 

Pet Semetary: Amazon - $6.99

Doctor Louis Creed (Dale Midkiff) moves his family to Maine, where he meets a friendly local named Jud Crandall (Fred Gwynne). After the Creeds' cat is accidentally killed, Crandall advises Louis to bury it in the ground near the old pet cemetery. The cat returns to life, its personality changed for the worse. When Louis' son, Gage (Miko Hughes), dies tragically, Louis decides to bury the boy's body in the same ground despite the warnings of Crandall and Louis' visions of a deceased patient.

Pet Sematary (Blu-ray) 

Riverdale: Season One: Amazon - $33.99

Archie Andrews starts the school year with the world weighing on his shoulders. He's decided he wants to pursue a future in the music business, but his recently ended clandestine relationship with the music teacher has left him without a mentor, and his friendship with Jughead Jones is in a bad place. Things look like they might be turning around when Veronica Lodge, a new girl, arrives. Despite the instant chemistry, Veronica is hesitant to risk a friendship with Betty -- who has a crush on Archie -- to pursue anything. Amidst all the small-town banality lurks a mystery: the recent tragic death of Jason Blossom, the twin brother of beautiful and popular troublemaker, Cheryl.

Riverdale: The Complete First Season (Blu-ray) 

DC's Legends of Tomorrow: Season 2: Amazon - $29.99

Time Master Rip Hunter travels back in time to the present day where he brings together a team of heroes and villains in an attempt to prevent Vandal Savage from destroying the world and time itself.

DC's Legends of Tomorrow: The Complete Second Season (Blu-ray) 

Once Upon A Time: Season Six: Best Buy - $44.99

In the town of Storybrooke, Maine, not everything is as it seems. When Henry, the adopted son of the town's mayor, goes searching for his birth mother, he begins to unravel a web of secrets connected to his adoptive mother and her relationship to the strange amnesia afflicting the town's residents. While all of the people in Storybrooke are actually fairytale characters, only the mayor remembers the magical past. As Henry's quest progresses, however, the real stories of the town's residents come to light. Together with Emma, his birth mother, and their friends, including Jiminy Cricket, Snow White, Prince Charming and other fairytale legends, Henry fights to restore love and magic to the town. This often puts him at odds with his adoptive mother, the evil queen who cursed the town's residents.

Once Upon a Time: The Complete Sixth Season (Blu-ray) 


  - The Impostor 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Screenings in the Bay (Monday to Friday): Dave Made a Maze, Army of Darkness, Night Warning


It's going to be another crazy week in the bay area! Dave Made a Maze opens Friday and is actually screening in San Francisco, The Monster Project hits VOD, and Army of Darkness screens at midnight. Not to mention Terror Tuesday, Nippon Nights, and some dark double features.
Read on for details!


Opening This Week


Dave Made A Maze (2017)
Limited Theatres / VOD Friday 18th (1hr 20min)
Adventure/ Comedy/ Horror (IMDB)
Dave, an artist who has yet to complete anything significant in his career, builds a fort in his living room out of pure frustration, only to wind up trapped by the fantastical pitfalls, booby traps, and critters of his own creation. Ignoring his warnings, Dave's girlfriend Annie leads a band of oddball explorers on a rescue mission. Once inside, they find themselves trapped in an ever-changing supernatural world, threatened by booby traps and pursued by a bloodthirsty Minotaur.


The Monster Project (2017)
Limited Theatres/ VOD Friday 18th (1hr 35min)
Action/ Horror (IMDB)
In a chilling and inventive take on the classic monster movie genre, THE MONSTER PROJECT follows a group of aspiring horror filmmakers, eager to raise their YouTube subscriber count, who post an online casting call for "real life" monsters to interview for their documentary. They find three participants and choose to film them sharing their haunted experiences in a mansion in the woods on the night of a lunar eclipse. The production suddenly turns into a nightmare when the participants transform into a real vampire, demon, and skinwalker (a type of harmful witch, according to Navajo legends, that can transform into any animal with the intent of harming people), forcing the unsuspecting crew to fight for their lives.



30th Anniversary Tour

Monday 14th @ 7pm (1hr 22min)
Adventure/ Comedy/ Horror (Rotten Tomatoes)
A quintet of classic movie monsters invades a small town looking for a lost amulet that will help them rule the world. A bunch of kids decide to fight back by forming the "Monster Squad."

With Special Guests Andre Gower, Ryan Lambert, and Ashley Bank


Terror Tuesday

Tuesday 15th @ 9:45pm (1hr 36min)
Horror/ Slasher
In this off-beat slasher film, the over-coddled nephew of a sexually frustrated spinster aunt finds his life in jeopardy after his aunt's inner demons get the best of her.
Weird Wednesday

Wednesday 16th @ 10pm (1hr 45min)
Drama (IMDB)
An attractive but conservative mid-30's housewife stays at the house of her sexually open daughter and soon becomes involved in her daughter's swinger lifestyle.




A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Thursday 17th @ 7pm (2hrs 16min)
Crime/ Drama/ Scifi (IMDB)
"In an England of the future, Alex (Malcolm McDowell) and his "Droogs" spend their nights getting high at the Korova Milkbar before embarking on "a little of the old ultraviolence," while jauntily warbling "Singin' in the Rain." After he's jailed for bludgeoning the Cat Lady to death, Alex submits to behavior modification technique to earn his freedom; he's conditioned to abhor violence. Returned to the world defenseless, Alex becomes the victim of his prior victims."

-with-


Straw Dogs (1971)
Thursday 17th @ 9:30pm (1hr 53min)
Crime/ Drama/ Thriller (IMDB)
Sam Peckinpah examines the instinctual capacity for violence in his controversial 1971 film, loosely based on the novel The Siege of Trencher's Farm. To avoid the Vietnam-era social chaos in the U.S., American mathematician David Sumner (Dustin Hoffman) moves with his British wife, Amy (Susan George), to the isolated Cornish town where she grew up, but their presence provokes antagonism among the village's men. As the hostilities escalate from routine bullying to the gang rape of his wife, David finds his pacifistic self backed into a corner. When the hooligans attack his house, David finally resorts to the gruesome violence that he abhors. 



Midnight Madness

Friday 18th @ 11:55pm (1hr 21min)
Comedy/ Horror (IMDB)
The third in director Sam Raimi's stylish, comic book-like horror trilogy that began with The Evil Dead (1982), this tongue-in-cheek sequel offers equal parts sword-and-sorcery-style action, gore, and comedy. Bruce Campbell returns as the one-armed Ash, now a supermarket employee ("Shop Smart...Shop S-Mart") who is transported by the powers of a mysterious book back in time with his Oldsmobile '88 to the 14th century medieval era. Armed only with a shotgun, his high school chemistry textbook, and a chainsaw that mounts where his missing appendage once resided, the square-jawed, brutally competent Ash quickly establishes himself as a besieged kingdom's best hope against an "army of darkness" currently plaguing the land.

Also screening Saturday




Night of the Living Dead (1968)
Friday 18th @ 10:30pm (1hr 36min)
Horror (IMDB)
There is panic throughout the nation as the dead suddenly come back to life. The film follows a group of characters who barricade themselves in an old farmhouse in an attempt to remain safe from these flesh eating monsters.



Nippon Nights

Wednesday 16th @ 9:20pm (1hr 28min)
Comedy/ Fantasy/ Horror (IMDB)
In an effort to avoid spending time with her father and his creepy new lover, young Gorgeous (Kimiko Ikegami) resolves to visit her aunt's remote mansion. With six of her closest friends in tow, including the musically inclined Melody (Eriko Tanaka) and the geeky Prof (Ai Matsubara), Gorgeous arrives at the estate, where supernatural events occur almost immediately. A severed head takes flight, household appliances come to life and a portrait of a cat seems to contain an evil spirit.


-Huntress

Sunday, August 13, 2017

The Overlook Theatre Reviews: Bloodmarsh Krackoon

0 of 5 viewers "Liked" "Bloodmarsh Krackoon" (1989, USA)
Here's what the creatures had to say:

Lord Battle - "Monsters are cool because they're not. They have no friends, are usually ugly, and only ironically drive sports cars, shoot guns, and get the girl at the end of the film. This is why I grew up loving monsters, I relate to them. What I hate is cool guy culture. Fast cars and faster women (whatever the fuck that means) culture. But what I hate more than anything is when cool guy culture bleeds into my indie monster movie. Bloodmarsh Krackoon features hitmen in a way I thought only Krampus 2: The Devil Returns could. Actually no, Krampus 2 was a lot of fun and even though the Krampus was barely in it. The Devil Returns still took a Tarantino stylized genre trope and misfired so badly that it was a ton of fun to watch and has become something I'll revisit every Christmas. The Krackoon however was a laborious wade through a ton of bad "cool guy" dialogue that never even approaches fun and does absolutely nothing for an audience that would purchase, let alone watch a film like Bloodmarsh Krackoon. I will say that I am still excited to see the original feature Krackoon which they include on the DVD. I'm hoping it will be the micro budget film I was looking for, not a micro budget "The Wire" who sometimes guest starred a puppet." - 1 Star

Dabbles - "I really wanted to walk out. But I had nowhere to go. It was trying to be clever, while painful acting and pacing needed to be worked on. This was the first time I wish I fell asleep, because sleep is definitely better than this movie. But it got an extra star because the puppet was cool and funny." - 2 Stars

Huntress - "Bloodmarsh Krackoon is one of those movies that completely messes with your perception of time. Ten minutes feels like an hour in this strange universe, where all you want is for some crazy monsters to appear and wreck everyone around but instead you get corrupt politicians and gang wars thrown together in a collage of confusion. And on top of all that it was boring!" - 1.5 Stars

Math Mage - "The theme song set my expectations too high. This film was a slog. The hadorable (horrible + adorable, like Gibble the Pokemon) hand puppets were excellent. Some terrible films are clearly about something and you can describe the film by saying that; but if I told someone this film was about a mutant raccoon that eats people I would be lying. This film is about an assisted living facility were a gangster feigning senility is housed and he plots with two orderlies to ruin the business so he brings the ---- to build a casino. It's about the deputy (now mayor since he was killed in the last one (yes it's a direct sequel to Krackoon, which is included as a feature on the DVD)) hiring his cousin (who is a mafia hit man) to hunt the Krackoon but they instead get drunk with the chief of police?! It's also about an old woman in the facility (who is the mayor's mother) adopting a homeless boy and giving him to a nurse who finds the boy is keeping the Krackoon (finally!) and that it killed the mayor and his parents. Then the Krackoon mutates into a werewolf to get revenge on a random guy who stepped on its baby?! Do not watch this film." - 1 Star

Trash - "Oh hell no. This isn't for me. Who is this even for? Put me down as a walkout, I can't deal with this." - Walkout - Default 2 Stars

The Great Hornito - Walkout - Default 2 Stars



The Overlook Theatre Final Rating*
(Below is for after you've seen the film)

It was a humid Thursday evening, attendance was at its minimum for an Overlook film review. This had been the third week in a row with this particular crowd (Huntress, Dabbles, The Great Hornito, Math Mage and I) thought it would be fun to revisit our old way of selecting a film. I grabbed 3 movies that I predicted would be fun and most likely bad (in a critical sense). The films I selected to choose from were Night Hunter, Bloodmarsh Krackoon, and Quest for the Egg Salad. The popular choice was Night Hunter, but because everyone was so excited to watch it we put the film on hold for a big crowd... Quest for the Egg Salad is a very tough sell to any audience (look it up, I think it's streaming for  free on YouTube) and it will most likely play for just Math Mage and me in our new segment (more on that later) since only one person voted for it (me). That left us with Bloodmarsh Krackoon, which we were all happy with even though it was no one's first choice, simply because a micro budget film with a puppet raccoon high on crack can be many things. Certainly not boring!

As we lingered on the DVD menu (to make proper social media posts and whatnot) we slowly became endeared to the theme song playing on loop. Once the film started we were greeted with a 5 minute summary of the first film Krackoon (2010), which Bloodmarsh Krackoon is a sequel to but doesn't attempt to make clear on the DVD box at all; Krackoon is however available as a bonus feature on the DVD. Now I should mention that this lead to a brief discussion about which film we should be watching. I made a executive decision and decided we would digest the films the way they wanted us to, which I think means we watch the film on the cover of the DVD. So we fast forwarded through the recap intro and resumed the film. It was my choice to skip the "what happened on the last episode of Krackoon" portion of the film and I question whether or not that was the right choice. Because I had made the decision to go on with the sequel, I didn't want to spoil the original for everyone (and even though no one enjoyed this film we will be screening the original at some point). How was I supposed to know that the entire feature would be an attempt at a micro budget Coen Brothers film?

I know this might just seem like fun ribbing at a little horror movie's expense but if you know anything about Lord Battle it's that I couldn't be more against that. In fact, what I'm trying to articulate is that somewhere in the San Francisco Bay Area a group of 5 friends got together to watch a movie that had monetary limitations, which meant nothing to us because what we want from our stories are ideas. An earnest attempt at bringing to life ideas. The thing about making movies is it's hard, especially for the earnest micro budget film which will rarely be watched and possibly never understood. Bloodmarsh Krackoon looks like it was a lot of fun to make, and I'll leave it at that.


- Lord Battle

The Overlook Theatre materialized in a residence for a screening on 7/27/2017
*Based on the star ratings turned in by character reviewers, others viewed and got to "Dislike" or "Like" but that does not affect the rating.