Favorite films

  • Censor
  • Castle Freak
  • Phenomena
  • The Last Matinee

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  • All the Colors of the Dark

    ★★★

  • Contamination

    ★½

  • Candyman

    ★★★

  • Halloween Kills

    ★★★

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  • Castle Freak

    Castle Freak

    ★★★★½

    This was excellent. For some reason or another, I put off watching Castle Freak for a long time and I’m not really sure why. Maybe it’s because of the title or maybe it’s because weird things happened with horror in the nineties. But this film doesn’t really feel like a nineties movie and I should have trusted the dream team of Stuart Gordon, Jeffrey Combs, and Barbara Crampton. Filming in an old Italian castle gives everything a wonderful gothic atmosphere…

  • Censor

    Censor

    ★★★★½

    Spectacular. Anxious. Full of grief, uncertainty, and fear.

    Enid is a video nasty censor in the Thatcher-era United Kingdom. Her job is to watch the films that are the worst of the worst, the smut, the filth, and the gore, and cut them down until they are fit for the masses. She views herself as a protector, a guardian keeping the public safe. When one particular film resonates with her—its plot bears a shocking similarity to the events surrounding the…

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  • Halloween Kills

    Halloween Kills

    ★★★

    Just some stray thoughts on this one:

    The parts with Michael killing people were very very good, but the movie spends too much time on characters that we don’t really care about.

    I like how this picks up directly after Halloween (2018) in the same way that Halloween II starts immediately after the original.

    For purely Easter Egg reasons, some of Michael’s victims are found wearing the masks from Halloween III. It’s a cute reference, but doesn’t make any sense…

  • Petey Wheatstraw

    Petey Wheatstraw

    ★★½

    Boy, the first ten or so minutes of Petey Wheatstraw are so fun. It’s all funk and mesmerizing Rudy Ray Moore swagger. This is a vehicle for Moore’s comedy, such as it is, that quickly devolves into a bizarre, Faustian tale of dealing with the devil. When Petey is gunned down at a funeral, he agrees to marry the devil’s daughter (and become the devil’s son-in-law, as the theme song proclaimed) for a chance to live again and seek vengeance.…

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  • Wolfen

    Wolfen

    ★★★½

    This might just be in contention for my best new find of Hooptober. It’s one of those great dirty NYC movies, where the grime of the city just seeps through every scene. Wolfen counterbalances the grime with some amazing panoramic shots from the top of the Manhattan Bridge. What a cool idea to have some of your primary suspects work on top of a bridge. This is really a crime movie first, and it follows Albert Finney as he attempts…

  • Häxan

    Häxan

    ★★★

    Häxan is now tied with Nosferatu as the oldest film I’ve ever seen. It also seemed fitting to watch this right after November, a wonderful modern black-and-white folktale from the same region of the world (November is Estonian, Häxan is Swedish). Split into seven sections, this part documentary, part dramatization of witchcraft through the ages starts with medieval times, moves forward to the middle ages, and finally finishes with the director’s modern analysis.

    From an art historical perspective, Häxan is…