Raw/Grave(2016)

 

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Morgan (2016)

 

 

Morgan is a science fiction/thriller about a seemingly corrupt corporation who’s employed scientific team has been given the task of observing and “raising” a conscious droid. The movie immediately begins by showing us Morgan’s aggressive side. She’s shown attacking a scientist played by Jennifer Jason Leigh during an observation session. Throughout the film you see Jennifer’s character recuperating in a room with bandages over her eye and she’s still in a weakened state resulting from the attack. We get a sense of empathy and trust from the staff of scientists and staff working closely day to day with Morgan. She refers to her attack as an “accident” and also freely uses the word love. She appears to share the same naivety, innocence, and curiosity that any human child her age would have but underneath that appearance lingers something darker. The corporation starts questioning whether or not they should terminate her and they send in an agent to investigate her and the staff. This agent needs to collect her own data in determining how everyone should proceed with Morgan.

I enjoyed this story and believe it was executed well. I enjoy good twists and love stories about artificial intelligence and human droids. The cast was great. I’m biased because I really like Paul Giamatti, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Michelle Yeoh, Rose Leslie, and I’m keeping my eye out for future films starring Anya Taylor-Joy of The Witch. I appreciate that the ending didn’t feel rushed yet the action didn’t dwindle. There’s a lot to the premise that they could’ve gone into a bit more but other than that I found it to be good story telling.

Rigor Mortis 殭屍 (2013)

rigor

 

 

A retired actor, Chin Siu-Ho moves into an old run down apartment building after an attempted suicide where he meets an eccentric group of tenants and the apartment manager Uncle Yin. He eventually finds out that the building is haunted by hostile spirits and a vampire. Uncle Yin abandoned as a child, is a vampire hunter and the apartment manager. One of the tenants falls to his death down a flight of stairs running from a demon. He’s found by one of the tenants and the neighbors tell his wife.
The wife is so devastated that she decides to turn to black magic and gets help from a warlock to bring him back. The warlock recites a ritual and puts an intricate mask on the deceased husbands face but warns the wife to never take it off. While left alone with his body, she examines the mask on his face and begins to mourn because of all the cherished memories she has of him. She finally goes against the warlocks advice and removes the mask. He is now free to wreak havoc in the apartment building with a thirst for flesh and blood.

The actor begins to experience more of the supernatural prompting him to investigate the buildings dark history which he learns more about from Uncle Yin. From there he and Uncle Yin become adversaries in an attempt to cleanse the building of it’s evil spirits and demons. You’ll get a glimpse into the lives of eccentric tenants bound together by the supernatural. They’re caught between two dimensions. One of the living and on the other end of the spectrum a world of everything else you’ve ever read, watched, or heard about the creatures of folktales and the paranormal. The story reminds me of Ghost Busters but it’s darker, never campy, and more action packed. The protagonists literally fight the creatures from the netherworld. They still use relics to aid them but as you’ll see if you watch Rigor Mortis it proves to be a very arduous task.

 

 

 

 

 

Creep (2014)

creep-movie-images-2015 creep

 

 

Creep tries to give us a harrowing example of why we should be cautious when making any deals with those we contact through Craigslist. The film is based on a story written by Mark Duplass and Patrick Brice, who also star as  Aaron the videographer and Josef a seemingly eccentric man who creates a post on Craigslist asking for assistance with recording the last few moments of his life. Josef meets with Aaron and tells him that he has brain cancer which can’t be treated. He and his pregnant wife have decided to make a video for their child. Aaron and Josef’s first meeting left me with an immediate sense that something was a bit off with Josef. Once he gets  more in depth with Aaron about his exact needs the head games begin. The story has a good premise, it was original and Mark Duplass gave a pretty good performance playing the crazy, off-centered, eccentric man who just wants to create some descent memories for his son before he dies.

I believe the weak points of the film are the holes in the story and limited character development. I also would have enjoyed the movie more as a regular film not pov.  That would have given the opportunity to present a story with a  stronger background supporting the plot. There are many unanswered questions about Josef who comes off as lonely and possessive but soon  you come to find that he’s a wolf in sheeps clothing.

 

 

 

 

 

Clown (2014)

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A young boy named Jack is thrown a birthday party by his parents Kent and Meg. The party was to feature a clown but he became a no show. His father Kent decides to take his place and puts on an old clown outfit that he found in a trunk at a home his real estate company is trying to sell. After the party Kent tries to take his costume off but finds he’s having trouble. He struggles to pull his rubber nose off, the clown wig won’t budge and it’s as if it’s fastened with super glue, and last but not least his clown outfit becomes stuck to his body. He makes many attempts to take it off but it won’t budge. He has to continue living his life in a clown costume which offers up many comedic situations while he goes to work and runs errands. After a while he starts to feel the physical changes within him and realizes that he’s starting to crave the taste of children. Not only must he avoid children, but he also needs answers for the sake of the safety of his own son and wife.

He tries to pinpoint where the costume came from and meets a man named Herbert Karlsson, a costume shop owner who has knowledge about the costumes origins.  Herbert tells him that it’s not a costume at all. It’s the actual skin of an ancient demon cloyne that eats children and there’s no way to remove it. He avoids his family and tries to isolate himself but the transformation continues and so do his cravings.

This movie was frightening and funny as hell. I’m a huge fan of folklore and this film was able to conjure up a new and creative twisted tale that you can frighten your kids with, just kidding. It was more enjoyable and humorous than I thought it would be. With odd situational humour and one mans lonely journey/transformation into the depths of literal hell and madness.