CiCi's horror reviews!

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Survivor 5s #2 Bitch
I'm looking forward to your Shining review. I recently rewatched it and gave it a
definitely a horror classic.
Thank you, False Writer! It shouldn't be too long



I have to return some videotapes.
Good review, and may I recommend Goodnight Mommy? The trailer freaked me out enough to be interested, but I can't find it anywhere.



Survivor 5s #2 Bitch
Good review, and may I recommend Goodnight Mommy? The trailer freaked me out enough to be interested, but I can't find it anywhere.
Thank you, Cole! And that trailer was so so unnerving and uncanny, I had chills by the end. It was Austria's pick for that year's Oscar selection, so it should be really good, I'll do my best to look for it!



Survivor 5s #2 Bitch
It's since become one of the most iconic horrors to have been produced on British shores within the new millennium. Many imitators have since emulated the general premise, but the chilling piece by Neil Marshall (of Dog Soldiers fame), still stands strongly on it own.



The plot follows 6 women who decide to go on a caving expedition 1 year after Sarah (Shauna Macdonald) lost both her husband and only child in a car crash. However, Juno (Natalie Mendoza) did not notify anyone about the women's whereabouts, a mistake that proves to be disastrous when the underground network is filled with inbred, deformed, and cannibalistic dwellers who hunt the collection of women.

Positives
Mise-en-scene is used to such magnificent effect, it makes you concentrate intensely from beginning to end, and provides substantial shocks if minor details are spotted, for example, several crawlers can be seen and heard before the dramatic confrontation half way into the film, and my blood ran cold when I first noticed one that vanished when light was flashed upon it again. It also makes sure that very little is captured on screen besides the character, and when all you can see and hear is people scraping against rocks in heavily narrowed and constricted areas, you quickly feel as trapped and anxious as they do.

The plot is deceptively simple, the premise of having 6 women trapped in a cave being attacked by incestuous creatures hardly screams innovation, and in fact, I kind of look of this is a bit like a British re-telling of The Hills Have Eyes. Anyway, this allows Marshall to focus on other elements of the film, instead of focusing on gratuitous plot development beforehand whilst little to nothing happens. This man knows the genre, and he's realistic in perceiving the expectations and wants of general audiences of such films. Yet he doesn't dumb it down either, which seems like a near impossible task.

The overall ambiguity as to the whole plot and events that unfold massively work in the film's favour, in a similar way that it does for The Thing. Some people have suggested that the crawlers don't exist at all, and Sarah is the one responsible for attacking all of the women, others have suggested that the cave network is symbolic of a womb, and the crawlers are manifestations of Sarah's fear of her own after the death of her only child, which also explains the exclusively female cast. Then the metaphorical meanings, such as Sarah's baptism/rebirth in the pool of blood scene all just make the film all the more fascinating, simultaneously emphasising the degree of skill and effort that Neil Marshall has placed into constructing every detail of his piece.
I also adore how Marshall develops his characters through their actions, and not particularly through their words. After everything kicks off, the traits of the women become almost immediately apparent. Some desperately attempt to flee by themselves, some try to defend their comrades, and some form small factions and set off. A lot of them then prioritise their own safety first, illustrated by their gradual decrease in looking for their allies, and by their own selfish actions. A massive plot point is revealed entirely through the exchange of a single item, again indicating the significance of paying attention to everything going on. It does make you think a lot
Nevertheless, the characters interactions are authentic, they don't unite in the face of adversity, and they instead immediately turn on each other and play the blame game, it just felt real, because people don't think and behave rationally in such bizarre and desperate circumstances, and this reflected that beautifully.
Yet despite all of this, the characters remain sympathetic due to the overall viciousness of their attackers, all of the aforementioned elements just make every encounter extremely tense. I've never felt so much dread from watching a film in ages, again, beautifully done!

Then I have to give massive praise to the make-up team, the first time a body shot was placed onto one of the creatures, I had heart palpitations. Grotesque doesn't begin to cover it! But them, combined alongside the lighting, camera work, and minimal soundtrack just makes their acts of brutality all the more horrifying, because Marshall employs an emotionally distanced approach to it all!

Negatives
Major Spoilers!
I mentioned a whole revelation regarding an item above, it's a locket or pendant, something along those lines. Anyway, it belonged to Sarah's husband, who gives it to Juno, who loses it when Alex (another explorer) snatches it, who gives it back to Sarah, who subsequently maims Juno because of this...
What this means is that Juno had an affair with Sarah's hubbie, and then it's apparently implied then that the reason he crashed his car, killing his daughter and himself, is because he was thinking of Juno. It's a big stretch, and it took me so long to piece it together that I had to consult wikipedia and imdb by the end . It could have used more elaboration, because I feel it will have been lost on a lot of people.

The CGI effects at the beginning were dreadful too, the film never presented itself as looking like a low budget feature, but the bats at the start made me question that.

Conclusion
Simply put, it's the best British horror since Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later. I don't think Britain have equalled it since either (on the top of my head anyway).

And to any Americans, do not watch the ending edited for your country! Make sure you watch the ending that the rest of the world saw! And disregard the sequel too




28 days...6 hours...42 minutes...12 seconds
Yeah, the changed ending was bogus.

Neil Marshall is such an underrated director. Dog Soldiers is one hell of a fun werewolf film. Doomsday, despite its faults, it's a homage to Carpenter and Miller. Centurion is Fassbender before becoming famous, in an exciting cat and mouse action flick.

The man has also directed two very memorable Game of Thrones episodes, Blackwater and The Watchers on the Wall, both action dominated episodes. He was set to direct a film about Dracula's voyage on the Demeter, but that has apparently fallen through. Now it seems he's doing some kind of King Kong sequel???

I hope he gets more opportunities, I love his films.
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Suspect's Reviews



Survivor 5s #2 Bitch
Yeah, the changed ending was bogus.

Neil Marshall is such an underrated director. Dog Soldiers is one hell of a fun werewolf film. Doomsday, despite its faults, it's a homage to Carpenter and Miller. Centurion is Fassbender before becoming famous, in an exciting cat and mouse action flick.

The man has also director two very memorable Game of Thrones episodes, Blackwater and The Watchers on the Wall, both action dominated episodes. He was set to direct a film about Dracula's voyage on the Demeter, but that has apparently fallen through. Now it seems he's doing some kind of King Kong sequel???

I hope he gets more opportunities, I love his films.
Except for Dog Soldiers, I knew absolutely none of that so thanks! But, I'm not surprised he's worked on Game of Thrones, I can imagine him excelling in that. And after quickly looking up those two, it looks as though horror is what he should probably stick to, neither one seems to have done that well, and I'd never even heard of Doomsday.

And IMDb says its only rumoured that he'll direct a Kong sequel... I don't know how I feel about that, again, I reckon he should return to horror.



28 days...6 hours...42 minutes...12 seconds
Doomsday is his weakest film in my opinion. It is a wild film, all over the place. Centurion is underrated in my opinion, it takes a bit to get going, but once the poop hits the fan it's a lot fun.

Dog Soldiers

The Descent

Centurion

Doomsday



Survivor 5s #2 Bitch
Doomsday is his weakest film in my opinion. It is a wild film, all over the place. Centurion is underrated in my opinion, it takes a bit to get going, but once the poop hits the fan it's a lot fun.

Dog Soldiers

The Descent

Centurion

Doomsday
I have heard of Centurion before actually, I'll have to give it a look now, especially if Michael Fassbender stars!



Wanna Date? Got Any Money?
I gave it about a
glad to see another fan, especially one who liked it more than me. As always CiCi awesome review, I like reading your take on horror because it seems you really enjoy it and just appreciate the medium as a whole, that being said.

I honestly believe it was an accurate portrayal of human behaviour when exposed to -that- kind of adversity, as it illustrates the extremes of fight or flight, when these girls are eloquently put, fvcked. The locales and sets created are used with elegance and honestly do a fantastic job of creating the atmosphere of depression, confinement and certain doom that the film uses so well to tell us the story of these four females who seem intent on a journey rife with folly. I agree that the monsters are nothing new, but I appreciated how they took their cues from subterranean wildlife and made them blind, with heightened smell and hearing and expert acrobatics apparently. It really added to the legit creep factor knowing these ugly bastards evolved in the bowels of the earth, and that in some strange way made these beasts kind of believable...

I also 110% agree with the whole stupid locket thing, the film could really have done without that, I don't think they needed to really build any more animosity and tension between the girls, because the situation at hand was sufficient. Now I don't know if they thought that the audience would need a tangible tipping point where someone just lost their *****, or if it was just some kind of stupid ploy to make the audience feel one way or another about the characters in question. And yes the real ending is way better, there was no way she was gonna realistically make it out of that damned place.

American's always want a happy ending though.

P.S: Dog Soldiers is his best film.
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Wanna Date? Got Any Money?
Doomsday is his weakest film in my opinion. It is a wild film, all over the place. Centurion is underrated in my opinion, it takes a bit to get going, but once the poop hits the fan it's a lot fun.

Dog Soldiers

The Descent

Centurion

Doomsday
Centurion was wicked dude, loved it. And I agree 100% with that list. but maybe 4.5 for DS



Survivor 5s #2 Bitch
I gave it about a
glad to see another fan, especially one who liked it more than me. As always CiCi awesome review, I like reading your take on horror because it seems you really enjoy it and just appreciate the medium as a whole, that being said.

I honestly believe it was an accurate portrayal of human behaviour when exposed to -that- kind of adversity, as it illustrates the extremes of fight or flight, when these girls are eloquently put, fvcked. The locales and sets created are used with elegance and honestly do a fantastic job of creating the atmosphere of depression, confinement and certain doom that the film uses so well to tell us the story of these four females who seem intent on a journey rife with folly. I agree that the monsters are nothing new, but I appreciated how they took their cues from subterranean wildlife and made them blind, with heightened smell and hearing and expert acrobatics apparently. It really added to the legit creep factor knowing these ugly bastards evolved in the bowels of the earth, and that in some strange way made these beasts kind of believable...

I also 110% agree with the whole stupid locket thing, the film could really have done without that, I don't think they needed to really build any more animosity and tension between the girls, because the situation at hand was sufficient. Now I don't know if they thought that the audience would need a tangible tipping point where someone just lost their *****, or if it was just some kind of stupid ploy to make the audience feel one way or another about the characters in question. And yes the real ending is way better, there was no way she was gonna realistically make it out of that damned place.

American's always want a happy ending though.

P.S: Dog Soldiers is his best film.
Thanks for the detailed response, ATC! I hugely appreciate it!

And thank you! I weirdly love horror films, it's one of those where I can't explain why I love it, I just do

I like the point you make about fight or flight actually, for some reason, that never occurred to me, but it's true! Having watched the scene where ***** hits the fan again, it looks as though the ones who ran did intend to go back, because they're all screaming for each other. But yes, I agree, I think all of their responses are legitimate ones, which is why even the most selfish ones are sympathetic.

I agree about the tension between the women thing too, it wasn't needed, there was already friction between them when they got lost that just kept on increasing.

And lots of people keep recommending Dog Soldiers, and after watching Ginger Snaps, I'm on the look out for more films about those deadly pooches I'll have to check it out soon.



Great review CiCi. The way you talked about the characters, plot, and filmmaking techniques really makes me want to watch it again. I thought it was a bit weird that you said the plot was very simple, because you went into a lot of depth describing the plot and even had a hard time putting together it's most complex part. Doesn't that show that the plot was not simple? Maybe you meant that the premise was simple, but the plot was complex.

I don't agree with your criticism that the part you didn't get should have been made a little clearer. I like movies that make me think. I like it when I have to atch a movie more than once to fully grasp it. That increases it's rewatchability. I'm glad that was your only criticism though.

The only flaw I found was that the characters could see in the depths of the caves even without light. I don't know if you've ever been in caves, but it's pitched black and your eyes do not adjust. You can't see your own hand in front of your face. It's a bit hazy because it's been a few years since I watched it. They had lights, but I think there were times when they turned them out or lost them and could still kind of see. Also there were a few times when I think the cave dwellers would have detected the women, but for the sake of plot devices they didn't. I think they did their best to make it believable, but because they wanted the plot to go in certain directions I think they did force it just a little too much.

Good review overall, and I'm glad you liked it. *It's *really fun and unique movie. I enjoyed reading your thoughts and personal take.


WARNING: spoilers below
So what ending are you referring to? In my copy at the end Sarah dreams that she makes it out and then wakes up to find she's still trapped.



Survivor 5s #2 Bitch
Great review CiCi. The way you talked about the characters, plot, and filmmaking techniques really makes me want to watch it again. I thought it was a bit weird that you said the plot was very simple, because you went into a lot of depth describing the plot and even had a hard time putting together it's most complex part. Doesn't that show that the plot was not simple? Maybe you meant that the premise was simple, but the plot was complex.

I don't agree with your criticism that the part you didn't get should have been made a little clearer. I like movies that make me think. I like it when I have to atch a movie more than once to fully grasp it. That increases it's rewatchability. I'm glad that was your only criticism though.

The only flaw I found was that the characters could see in the depths of the caves even without light. I don't know if you've ever been in caves, but it's pitched black and your eyes do not adjust. You can't see your own hand in front of your face. It's a bit hazy because it's been a few years since I watched it. They had lights, but I think there were times when they turned them out or lost them and could still kind of see. Also there were a few times when I think the cave dwellers would have detected the women, but for the sake of plot devices they didn't. I think they did their best to make it believable, but because they wanted the plot to go in certain directions I think they did force it just a little too much.

Good review overall, and I'm glad you liked it. *It's *really fun and unique movie. I enjoyed reading your thoughts and personal take.


WARNING: spoilers below
So what ending are you referring to? In my copy at the end Sarah dreams that she makes it out and then wakes up to find she's still trapped.
Thats what I meant, the concept of it is simple, but the plot isn't really due to all the potential meanings.
And I do like films that make me think too, but here it was extremely vague and obscure as to what that all meant, I thought.

And I wouldn't have picked up on that, because I've never been caving, and I'm not sure I want to after this I think they did the best they could though. Apparently the sequel is lit up like a Christmas tree!

And yes, that's the normal ending. Supposedly, in the USA, at least during its theatrical run, the film ended during the dream sequence where Sarah makes it to her car

And thanks for dropping by, Zotis! I'm glad you liked it



I haven't seen Dog Soldiers, but I didn't think Centurion was particularly good. It was okay, but nothing special. I thought Doomsday was utter garbage though. It was so bad I turned it off after about half an hour.



Survivor 5s #2 Bitch
Thanks you all for voting this thread number 12 on the review countdown! I was, and still am, astonished. This has also made me put my arse in gear (that joke will quickly become clear ), and I'm getting back to reviewing! The Shining is swiftly approaching, but as a prelude to it of sorts, I'll review another one of the most polarising horror films of all time, The Human Centipede!



The plot follows a deranged scientist (Dieter Laser). Who, after retiring from an innovative career in separating siamese twins, turns his interests to more sinister creations, that I'm sure need no introduction

Positives
Although potentially unintentional, the film made me grimace in the most simplistic of scenes. Watching a needle pop out of one of the victims arms to leave a nasty scratch effectively played on my gargantuan fear of needles. I frantically patted away at my laptop screen when that happened, in a futile attempt to block it, and it even makes me cringe just typing about it
But then, seeing a badly infected face probably played on some people's phobias, for it was very detailed. Licking blood, smelling pus, are other small scenes that are likely included to play on the potential fears of some watchers. He certainly tries to affect as many of us as he possibly can.

What isn't up for debate though really, is Six's invasion of moral boundaries, he certainly went far beyond what any of us most likely would ever think of, and shoved it in our faces (quite literally). However, Six even admitted that this film was just to introduce us to the concept of the centipede, and not to fully explore it in all of its grotesque nature. He saved that for number 2 without a doubt (I haven't seen 3 yet, so I can't comment on that). Consequently, it is quite original, and immediately stands out from a genre filled with countless imitations and rehashes. Although this doesn't make the film immediately outstanding, it is something I think is worthy of recognition and praise in even attempting.

I enjoyed the ending too, it was one part of the film I felt truly worked; it was powerfully emotive. Seeing Jenny dying (from what I presume was septicaemia) whilst consoling the only other living member in the chain by simply holding her hand as she cries out of hopelessness was probably more powerful and impacting than any other scene in the duration of the film. It worked on many levels, namely it maintained the depressing tone of the film, yet also implemented hope into it through showing a simple act of humanity in a world where compassion gets you drugged and mutilated, and selfishness prevails. It's a memorable ending, and I hard time forgetting this single scene.

Negatives
In many ways, Tom Six is almost a Dutch reincarnation of the infamous Marquis De Sade whose catalogues of sadism wrapped in cataclysmic plots evidently serve as a primary source of inspiration, particularly Salo. However, I'm not sure if taking this figure as an inspiration for a film was a failure in itself. When reading, we have to imagine what is being described, and I think it's safe to say that the human imagination is far more vivid and unrestrained than anything a production company could create. Therefore, when reading one of the Marquis' books, for example, we probably imagine the acts in a more graphic manner than what ever could be enacted in real life. This film is restrained, we see very little to repulse or offend us, it's all implied. And because we can't see the faces or even hear the voices of the two women who have to endure this hell, we can't determine the full extent of their reactions, making it harder for us to pity people who are already underdeveloped. Consequently, this makes extended scenes of a woman looking at an anus a bit tedious. The film essentially fails to deliver on its obvious intent to disgust and offend us (then again, the second film went completely to the opposite end of the spectrum! )
I'm not saying this would be better a book either, but offering more detailed descriptions and reactions would almost certainly be more intense and horrifying than anything we saw in this.

Developing on the characters, they're paper thin. The doctor is the stereotypical deranged scientist, and Mr Laser's embodiment of him probably just emphasises this. Additionally, the American tourists have very little to them, and most of the time, they simply offer cliched lines. Like I said above, the most telling scene that makes those two characters authentic is their consolation of one another in the ending scene. If Six showed us more interactions like this, the characters could have been iconic, considering that's what the film is at this stage. Yet it's not, it suffers from weak dialogue crafting (the ending monologue of the Japanese character dragged on too long, and was stereotypical, and finally adequately delivered).

That's another thing, the acting is not so good. I was prepared to let Laser off, because scanning through his credits on IMDb, most of his films are German language, and so I thought he might be uncomfortable performing in English. But that wasn't the case. He delivers lines in his native tongue, but he's just as bad even then in all honesty. The leading ladies (Ashley C. Williams and Ashlynn Yennie) are passable, but not terrific, but a part from crying, they had little else to do. The other leading character, Akihiro Kitamura, is average as well, although I found his final monologue a bit excruciating.

Conclusion
I have mixed feelings about this film, it's crafted very well, and a lot of effort and care clearly was put into creating it, and it is hugely original in its own way. But it falls short in a lot of aspects, the acting is pretty bad, the dialogue is pretty crappy most of the time, and a few of the scenes drag on and on and on (the chase between the centipede and an injured Laser, Lindsay's escape scene). I'd like to give it higher, but it is pretty forgettable




Master of My Domain
You finally post a new review, and it's gotta be one about a terrible film huh Anyways, glad you're back.
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Survivor 5s #2 Bitch
You finally post a new review, and it's gotta be one about a terrible film huh Anyways, glad you're back.
Aww, thank you!
I've just been a bit busy with school recently, and the song tournaments and survivor on here. But this and the sequel were (and I ***** you not) on national TV the other week, so I watched them both... and then I couldn't not post a review

But thanks again, Gatsby!!