Posted by: Brian Knowles
When I’m feeling lazy, I like hang out on the couch, drink beer, and watch movies. At those times I have no desire to do anything to advance the quality of my life in any way, and my creative juices are certainly not flowing. The difference between me and director Gilles Paquet-Brenner is that when I’m feeling worthless and indolent I don’t decide to make a movie. At least that is the impression I’ve come away from WALLED IN with, because not one frame of the film suggests anybody involved in its making gave a damn.
Mischa Barton “stars” as a recent college graduate who is the youngest in a family of demolition experts. Her first solo assignment for the family company is to plan the demolition of an old apartment complex in the middle of nowhere, due to be destroyed because the “government” has “ordered it.” The building was designed by an eccentric architect, who made it a habit of burying people alive in the foundations of his creations in order to increase structural rigidity. Something about an ancient Egyptian myth, I think.
WALLED IN also features Cameron Bright (Nicole Kidman’s tiny love interest in BIRTH, who, by the way, isn’t getting any less creepy), and Debra Kara Unger (who isn’t getting any less plastically-looking). Although both of them outshine Barton by quite a bit, this is like saying Brett Ratner is a better director than Donald Petrie.
Posted by: Peter Hall
Dimension Extreme have been on a streak of good-to-great titles for the past year, culminating in the hit that is EDEN LAKE (review). I don’t know much about DEAD IN 3 DAYS, but I’m willing to give Dimension’s acquistions department an edge once again. Hopefully their streak stays intact.
Oddly enough, DEAD IN 3 DAYS is the only standard definition title of note for the week. On Blu-Ray we’ve got SILENCE OF THE LAMBS. I own the out of print Criterion Collection of the classic, so I’m not jonesing enough to do a double dip for it in HD.
The week everyone is looking forward to. LET THE RIGHT ONE IN (review) hits on both DVD and BRD. As I find myself repeating again and again, there is no point in saying any more about LTROI at this point. We all know this is a must see movie, my only fear is that those who haven’t seen it must have the highest hopes in the world at this point. For that I apologize, I try to keep the hype down.
Don’t know a whole lot about DARK REEL except that it has Lance Henriksen in it, which means I am contractually obligated to the universe to see it. Filling out the other straight-to-DVD titles for the month are CROWLEY (co-written by Iron Maiden vocalist Bruce Dickinson), STASH (cover beyond my tolerance for sleaze) and the hilarious looking, gamer-themed fantasy flick BEN X.
LET THE RIGHT ONE IN is the only Blu.
A week of straight to DVD titles and a few reaches into deep catalog territory. STDers are WALLED IN and SATAN, while the catalog titles are the F.W. Murnau classics THE HAUNTED CASTLE and FAUST. These two titles are also included in a new Murnau boxset along with NOSFERATU, THE LAST LAUGH, TARTUFFE, and THE FINANCES OF THE GRAND DUKE.
On Blu-ray we’ve got Neil Jordan’s THE COMPANY OF WOLVES. I confess to never having seen it, though if I recall someone suggested it last time I was in a horror rut. I further confess I never got around to half of those titles. As LaTour recently pointed out, I was probably watching a giant lizard on the Sci-Fi channel and am thusly self-shamed.
As if the novels and film weren’t driven enough by their own fan based self-promotion, TWILIGHT’s release on DVD and BRD apparently requires its own retail day. Though I am far removed from its target demographic I can still say it’s not a bad movie. I’d rather watch it again than half the crap that ends up getting reviewed on HND, if that’s any measure.
Brace yourself for LOCUSTS: THE 8TH PLAGUE, THE GRUDGE 3: GRUDGIEST and PASSENGERS. Or brace yourself for a week in which you won’t spend a dime.
Nothing on the genre Blu-ray front, though I would be remiss if I went without mentioning the Criterion Collection of THE 400 BLOWS.
Before the ADF flood, let me not forget the title of the week: TIMECRIMES (review). I’ve seen it twice now and it only gets better with each viewing, unlike some time travel centric pictures. I’ll be adding this to the collection for sure.
Here comes the genre onslaught, thanks in large part to After Dark Films dropping off its 2009 Horrorfest titles. The only one I heard great things about was THE BROKEN, the only other I heard decent things about being FROM WITHIN. Rounding out that series is AUTOPSY, PERKIN’S 14, SLAUGHTER, THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT 3, VOICES and DYING BREED.
RJ Sayer actually saw CTHULHU in theaters so it feels wrong to call it a Straight to DVD movie despite its biggest name being Tori Spelling. I believer Sayer’s chief complaint about the movie was that it could have been much, much cooler. Tame enough response to make me check it out.
From the catalog we’ve got the awesomely titled THE SINFUL DWARF and the even awesomer titled CAT IN THE BRAIN. Know nothing of either, sorry.
On the Blu end we’ve got releases of both PITCH BLACK and CHRONICLES OF RIDDICK. For some reason I can only attribute to pure malice, we’ve also got a release of GHOSTS OF MARS. Christine and I tried watching this mess OnDemand not too long ago and barely made it 15 minutes in. Awful, awful movie born of the age of the irrelevant John Carpenter era.
Topping off the month are Blu releases of the Harvey Keitel starring TWO EVIL EYES and Takashi Miike’s notorious ICHI THE KILLER. Regretably unfamiliar with the former and not a fan of the latter, despite being a huge fan of Miike’s career as a whole. Rarely a fan of pushing it to the extreme. Give me the BIRD PEOPLE OF CHINA Miike over the ICHI brand any day, por favor.
Netflixing the Month
- LET THE RIGHT ONE IN
- THE BROKEN
- DEAD IN 3 DAYS
- FROM WITHIN