Paranormal

All posts tagged Paranormal

The Redeeming Review

Synopsis

The synopsis for The Redeeming states; ‘A disturbed single mother confronts a mysterious stranger and the echoes of her past to protect her home.’

Vague, ominous and yearning for more. The movie centres around Joyce (Tracey Ann Wood) who lives alone in a secluded country house. From the outset we’re given a glimpse into the woman’s tentative psyche, which is only exacerbated with the introduction of John (Ryan Wichert) The young man has apparently injured his arm and seeks refuge in her home. Joyce obliges and not only lets the man in, but tends to his wounds as well. As the movie progresses it becomes apparent that not all is as it seems. The pair, despite apparently not knowing each other, seem to share a dark bond.

The Redeeming

Review

As far as psychological thrillers go, director Brian Barnes does a great job of building suspense and keeping us on our toes. Personally, I thought from the outset that it was going to be a straightforward, cliche-ridden plot, but as the movie progressed I realised how wrong I was. The movie keeps you guessing throughout, with both characters portraying a secretive, almost sinister side at times. Think Misery with a paranormal twist and you’ll be close to the plot.

The Redeeming

The Redeeming was made with a considerably low budget, yet Barnes managed to overcome this through great casting and good cinematography. The only thing lacking for me was the intensity. There seemed to be a slight reluctance from both parties to be physically assertive when the time came. Whether this was down to the low budget and the subsequent “don’t damage my house” rule, or just an oversight in general, it was the only negative I could really find. However, with a convincing portrayal of diminishing mental health, a decent rapport between the pair, and a satisfying ending, the movie more than makes up for this.

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Knock Knock

Knock Knock Review

When it comes to genre-mashups, we all have our favourites involving horror. Whether it be Horror/ Sci-fi (Yes!), Horror/ Western (Yeehaw!) or Horror/ Romance (…meh). But my personal favourite is Horror/ Comedy. WHAT A COMBO! There’s just something about these two genres that work well together and I love it! You know what else I love? THE 80’s! Damn that was a good decade for movies. The cheesy soundtracks, the vibrant colours and the hilarious special effects. Imagine my delight when I realised that ‘Knock Knock’ has it all!

Here’s the IMDB Summary; ‘Knock Knock’ tells the story of down-on-his-luck former boxer Sam Grant, who one night finds himself caught in a whirlwind of conjecture and conundrum as his colorful and quirky neighbors come to him with scary tales of their apartment’s mysterious new resident. Inspired by the retro horror classics of VHS days gone by, ‘Knock Knock’, is sure to be a treat for any horror fan and aficionado.

The movie starts with a bizarre ad for a pizza company, complete with the typical visual flickers and sound quality associated with a VHS. The peculiar advertisement stars the dapper Walter D. Zaarke (complete with stick-on muttonchops) as he spends a couple of minutes describing the best, most wondrous, most mysterious pizza out there today. This sets the tone for the entire movie. Sounds ridiculous right? It is! And it’s FANTASTIC!

If the intro isn’t nostalgic enough for you, the opening soundtrack certainly will be. As soon as that synth-tastic, John Carpenter-esque tune hits your ears you’ll be transported back to the time of big hair, spandex and Rubik’s cubes. Once you’re settled, cue the comedy! With a hilarious script and perfectly cast actors you can’t help but laugh. It’s cheesy, goofy and if you imagine a grown up version of Scooby Doo (regrettably without the Great Dane himself) you’ll be pretty close to what Knock Knock is all about.

Knock Knock

When Sam ‘Stonefist’ Grant (Kerry Tartack) returns home, he doesn’t expect his quirky neighbour Olivia (Sisi Berry) waiting for him. Even more surprising is her theory about the newest resident in the building. With him partying all night and sleeping all day he’s just oozing vampiric traits. As a result, she’s invited fellow neighbours round to help; goofball stoner Dragon (Chuk Hell) and super smart Gretchen (Rachel Atterson).

You can easily envisage more movies with this brilliant cast and it’s clear that Director/ Writer Toby Canto Jr. has a flare for filmmaking. Now, don’t get me wrong, if you’re looking for an in-depth, story-driven movie with genuine scares, this isn’t the flick for you. However, if you’re looking for a wacky, fun, nostalgic experience, then dust off your old pastel tracksuit and enjoy the trip down memory lane.

If you like what you see then check it out!

Further info

The movie is available on DVD, BluRay, and streaming on Amazon Prime and Tubi. Check out the links below and enjoy!

DVD/ BluRay

Amazon Prime

Tubi

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Well it was only 2 days ago, after reviewing The Dinner Party. I was hyped over how versatile indepdent horror can be. Today I’ve come crashing down hard after being asked to watch/review 8 Graves. Unfortunately, it was a sobering reminder of just how cringe-worthy low budget horror flicks can be.

The storyline states; A college reunion in an old South Carolina house goes horribly wrong. Two vengeful spirits start to pick off the party goers one by one. The survivors have to choose whether to face up to their responsibilities or suffer the wrath of the ghosts.

Now, I know there are a number of restrictions that a lack of budget can bring; poor cgi, low quality camera/equipment, but poor acting doesn’t need to be one of them. The film opens with a title card stating “1865. The War Between The States Is Over. For Tens Of Thousands Now Without Sons, The Family Name Will Die. Unless a Male Child Can Be Found.” Okay, at this point I’m feeling it; nice opening, setting the scene. The filtered sequence gives it that old fashioned feeling That, as well as the dated garb of the couple on screen I’d say its a nice intro. Then the acting happens… oh dear.

Braxton Williams, Jennifer Olympia Bentley, and Andrea Catangay in 8 Graves (2020)

If that entire intro was cut then the film would be a lot better from the outset. But with the poor acting within the first 60 seconds the movie was a write-off before it even started. I’m pleased to say the acting did get slightly better in places and the storyline wasn’t too bad but it was still a massive let down. There was some believable interaction between the characters but the vast majority of the dialogue just felt awkward and corny with no authenticity at all.

Then there was the spirits. What on earth was going on there? I know I’ve mentioned the restrictions that a low budget can bring, but a good filmmaker should be aware of these. What they shouldn’t do is try to incorporate the basic resources they have into a movie which was already struggling. The spirits are depicted by a blue blur which is painful to watch. There is also a first person perspective adopted when the spirits are racing through the landscape which is a brazen knock off of The Evil Dead.

Overall, 8 Graves was a nice idea and the cinematography wasn’t too bad. Nothing special about the plot really but it could have been a lot better without the cringeworthy graphics. Some of the acting was better than others and I hope that the movie is just a learning curve for all involved. If anything, the trailer is probably the best bit. Check it out and decide for yourselves.

You can check out the IMDB page here

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