After the critical and financial success that was ‘Get Out’, for which writer/director Jordan Peele won an Oscar for ‘Best Original Screenplay’, the new mastermind of horror has now returned to give us… well… ‘Us’. It plays as a throwback to 70’s horror films with its cinematography and style, and as a feature-length ‘Twilight Zone’ episode with its themes and characters, yet one thing is for certain; Peele is a filmmaker that requires you to throw expectations out the door and pay attention, even if the results turn out as predictable as you expect for a horror film.
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For the past month, it has been really hard to go on Facebook without running into a ‘Bird Box’ meme; you know, the image of Sandra Bullock wearing a blindfold while rowing a boat with two kids inside it? I have honestly never seen a movie as talked about/hyped up since Disney’s ‘Frozen’ back in 2013, let alone one from Netflix. I have heard of shows like ’13 Reasons Why’ and ‘Orange is the New Black’ going viral, but as far as Netflix original movies go, they are rarely discussed. I am glad that the hype train has given me the opportunity to check it out myself. From what I can tell you, ‘Bird Box’ is actually good, though I do not get the hype.
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When it comes to Halloween, Netflix seems to be the go-to for anything horror, yet I personally would not recommend ‘Malevolent’. You can dismiss this and watch it if you are looking for some scares, but from my personal experience, I found it disappointing. My girlfriend and I watched this movie as a way to celebrate the month of Halloween; though she liked it more than I did. I will say that if you are a horror buff like she is, you might actually enjoy it for what it is. It is not a terrible movie, or one that is regretfully awful, but it is one that needs more meat on its bones.
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‘Happy Death Day’ knows it is just another copy of the 1993 comedy classic ‘Groundhog Day’; in which Bill Murray plays a selfish weatherman named Phil Connors, who finds himself reliving the same day over and over until he changes his ways, but not before finding love in Andie MacDowell’s Rita Hanson. It is especially reminiscent of the movie so much to where it cannot help but reference it in one scene. Our heroine, Tree Gilbman (Jessica Rothe) could even be a younger and sassy Connors if he were a sorority girl on the cusp of depression. I could swear ‘Happy Death Day’ is essentially a remake of the classic, but disguised as a slasher flick blended with a satirical college comedy. The story is nearly the same; protagonist is rude and discovers he/she is in a loop, reminds potential love interest (played here by Israel Broussard) of events noticed previously, becomes a better person, time loop ends and protagonist lives to see another day. However, the one ingredient that adds flavor to this birthday cake is a killer in a sweater and baby mask, and a mystery that needs to be solved.
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