Monday, May 28, 2012

Grave Encounters (2011)

Things that go 'bump' in the night
The crew of the reality show Grave Encounters, a show about paranormal activity, film an episode in an abandoned insane asylum.  Letting themselves be locked in for the night, their plan is to film all night and leave at sunrise.  But while locked in, they get way more than they bargained for.  Yet another 'found footage' film.  This one is not too bad.  The filmmakers manage to craft an interesting story with some genuine thrills.  This one is very reminiscent of The Blair Witch Project.

Grave Encounters gets 3 out of 5 Poblanos!

Director: The Vicious Brothers
Writer: The Vicious Brothers
Starring: Sean Rogerson, Juan Riedinger and Ashleigh Gryzko
Rotten Tomatoes: 50%
Metacritic:33 out of 100

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Pontypool (2009)

Its not what you said...
A morning radio host and his crew get some interesting reports of weird happening around town.  As things get more and more weird, the radio host and his two person crew find themselves trapped in their station building.  And then come the zombies.  This film is very tongue in cheek and very funny.  Pontypool offers a totally different take on the whole zombie genre.  Definitely worth watching.

Pontypool says it well with 4 out of 5 Poblanos!

Director: Bruce McDonald (Hard Core Logo
Writer: Tony Burgess
Starring: Stephen McHattie, (The FountainWatchmen), Lisa Houle and Georgina Reilly
Rotten Tomatoes: 83%
Metacritic: 54 out of 100

Friday, May 18, 2012

Essential Killing (2010)

How did I end up here?
When a man kills a soldier and two civilians with a rocket launcher, he is taken into custody by the military.  Disoriented, imprisoned, interrogated, he is then transferred to an unknown location.  When the van he's in crashes, he gets free from his captors.  He runs, but has no idea where he is or where he is going.  His only goal is to survive.  Essential Killing transcends the medium and becomes an experience unlike few films I've ever seen.  There is almost no dialogue.  The film consists almost entirely of action.  The general tone of the film is tense.  This is an experience in film watching. 

Essential Killing earns all 5 Poblanos!

Director: Jerzy Skolimowski
Writer: Jerzy Skolimowski, Ewa Piaskowska
Starring: Vincent Gallo and Emmanuelle Seigner
Rotten Tomatoes: 85%
Metacritic: not reviewed

Monday, May 14, 2012

Isolation (2005)

Eat more chicken
Dan owns a dairy farm.  When one of his cows is giving birth, the vet is bit by something in the birth canal.  Things go from bad to worse in this as Dan discovers that the whole thing is a genetic experiment gone wrong.  A cross between Alien and a nature show, this mildly creepy Irish mini-monster movie is better than it sounds.  There were a couple of good thrills and some creepy little creatures.

Isolation is thrilled me for a respectable 3 out of 5 Poblanos!

Director: Billy O'Brien
Writer: Billy O'Brien
Starring: John Lynch, Ruth Negga, Sean Harris and Marcel Iures
Rotten Tomatoes: 67%
Metacritic: not reviewed

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

I Sell the Dead (2008)

Invasion of the body snatchers
Arthur Blake is scheduled to be guillotined.  A priest is sent to hear his confession.  Arthur narrates the tale of his life leading up to how he ended up in the current situation.  With some humorous moments, I Sell The Dead is light popcorn fare.  As always though, British comedy always seems to be way funnier than American. 

I Sell The Dead manages to snatch 3 out of 5 Poblanos!

Director: Glenn McQuaid
Writer: Glenn McQuaid
Starring: Dominic Monaghan (Lost, LOTR), Ron Perlman (Hellboy, Sons of Anarchy, Bunraku) and Larry Fessenden (Stake Land)
Rotten Tomatoes: 74%
Metacritic: 62%

Saturday, May 5, 2012

My Week With Marilyn (2011)

Blonds have more fun
Young Colin Clark has managed to get a break in the film industry and is working on his first film.  Marilyn Monroe travels to England to make a film with Laurence Olivier.  Colin becomes a sort of confidant to Ms. Monroe.  The story is interesting enough, but not engrossing.  After a while, I stopped caring about the characters.  The most poignant moments of the film were when Ms. Monroe alluded to her past.  Michelle Williams captures her essence brilliantly.  She made me forget I was watching her play Marilyn Monroe; she seemed to be channeling instead of acting.  Oh and did I mention Hermione (Emma Watson) is in it too?

My Week With Marilyn is an average film with one standout performance which gets 3 out of 5 Poblanos!

Director: Simon Curtis
Writer: Adrian Hodges (screenplay), Colin Clark (books)
Starring: Michelle Williams (Blue Valentine), Eddie Redmayne and Kenneth Branagh
Rotten Tomatoes: 83%
Metacritic: 65 out of 100